Authorities in Florida say an elderly man is dead and his 86-year-old wife is facing criminal charges related to his death.
According to the Pensacola News Journal, authorities responded to a home in Santa Rosa County where they found 89-year-old Francis Joseph Lund dead as the result of a beating on Saturday.
Investigators believe his wife, Ramona Maxine Lund, issued the fatal beating with a walking cane earlier in the day.
It was a neighbor of the couple who contacted police after finding the man slumped on the front porch with his wife standing over him. The neighbor said she initially thought he fell and attempted to convince the suspect to call 911.
Police reports indicate Ramona Lund said she did not have her phone and the neighbor called police before attempting to save the victim’s life while emergency crews were on their way.
Santa Rosa County Sheriff Bob Johnson addressed the situation in a news conference on Monday, confirming the suspect had been arrested and is the county’s oldest suspect to face a criminal charge of murder.
As of the latest reports available, she remained behind bars with bond set at $250,000.
“We’re dealing probably with someone’s grandmother now,” Johnson remarked, adding that the homicide is “not something that happens every day.”
The incident remains under investigation, and the sheriff noted that initial interviews with the suspect suggest “it’s clear that she’s confused” about details being discussed.
“It’s important that, while we are going to focus on the mental confusion and that aspect, it’s important to remember and be reminded that she is charged with a very serious crime that has resulted in the loss of a human life,” he said.
Without directly referencing this case, a public defender tasked with handling Lund’s case broadly discussed the impact of age-related confusion on a defendant.
“If someone suffers from demementia, they are not going to become competent,” Bruce Miller said. “They are going to stay that way.”
[Featured image: Ramona Maxine Lund, Santa Rosa County Jail].