San Diego

Father Says Psychological Abuse Led Him To Shoot and Kill Son

Richard Landis Peck is accused of shooting and killing his son, 51-year-old Robert Landis Peck

The defense attorney for a 92-year-old man accused of shooting and killing his son argued his client was being psychologically tormented by his son who was "blind drunk" every day and shot him in self-defense.

Richard Landis Peck was booked into jail on suspicion of first-degree murder Wednesday after police responded to his Old Town home and found his son, 51-year-old Robert Landis Peck, dead in his bed.

SDPD said officers responded to a 911 call from a neighbor who reported the elder Peck called out for help and said he had just shot his son.

Peck was across the street at a neighbor's house when officers arrived.

At Peck's arraignment Friday, his attorney Douglas Gilliland said the victim was "blind drunk every day by 2 p.m.," and was threatening and abusive toward his father.

Gilliland said on the night of the shooting, the victim smashed his father's landline which was his primary mode of communication. Before going to bed, he told his father he would see him again later that night which made the elder Peck afraid to go to sleep, Gilliland said.

Peck's son was going through a divorce and had recently moved into his father's home, according to court records.

Gilliland said that Peck's daughter had recently tried to get him to move in with her in Georgia but he didn't want to leave his home.

He also said that Peck had called police on his son twice in the last three months. The first time, officers took his son in for a psychological evaluation and he was later released. At the second response, police determined the incident to be a family matter and left.

"At the end of the day, the defendant took a gun and shot and killed his own son. He took someone else's life and he did not have the right to do that," Deputy District Attorney Daniel Shim said.

Peck pleaded not guilty to murder with a special allegation of using a shotgun.

If convicted, he faces 50 years to life in prison.

The motive of the shooting is still under investigation.

Neighbors told NBC 7 the elder Peck was once a successful lawyer in San Diego.

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