A 92-year-old grandfather told a jury Wednesday he was afraid of his abusive and alcoholic son and acted in self-defense when he shot him dead in their Old Town home in November 2018.
Richard Peck was convicted in February of voluntary manslaughter in connection with his son Robbie Peck’s death, but the family is now reliving the tragedy as a multi-million dollar civil trial brought on by the victim’s wife, Annette Peck, plays out in court.
The elder Peck took the stand in a wheelchair Wednesday and told the jury he feared for his own life when he pulled the trigger.
“I had become very scared of him because he constantly was threatening me and telling me I was going to be killed,” Richard Peck said.
Richard Peck’s attorney also played body camera recorded by a San Diego police officer responding to an August 2018 incident at the Peck home.
Robbie Peck was laying on a couch when the officer arrived, and Richard Peck can be heard telling the officer “I’m scared of him.”
Richard Peck later tells the officer that the next time he responds to their home he will come back to a “body after [my son] kills me.”
Another SDPD officer testified he responded to a call at the house in July in which Robbie Peck was clearly incoherent.
The jury also heard testimony from Robbie Peck’s 17-year-old son who said his father was a loving and protective man and never violent. The teen, however, conceded his father had a drinking problem.
Mary Mosse, a friend of Robbie Peck’s wife who wanted to speak on her behalf, echoed the teen’s testimony outside of the courtroom.
“Rob is not a monster. He is not abusive. Rob suffered from alcoholism, yes. But he was a loving father, an amazing friend, a coach, a husband. He was all of those things. And we all loved him very much,” Mosse said.
Annette Peck and Mosse helped organize a golf tournament on behalf of Robbie Peck that raised $85,000 for the First Step House of North County, according to Mosse.
“We want Rob’s side to be heard. That’s what this is all about,” Mosse said.
Robbie Peck’s wife was seeking a divorce at the time of the fatal shooting. Her attorney claims there was never any evidence her client’s husband acted violently toward his father.
On Thursday, a jury will hear closing arguments and then convene after several days of emotional testimony.
Peck was sentenced to three years of probation and home confinement in March, in part, because of his age.
Richard Peck was sentenced to home confinement, in part, because of his age.