A 15-year-old boy told Mesa police he shot his father in the back of the head last month because he wouldn’t let the teenager use the Internet, saying My Space was his outlet.
When Hughstan Schlicker heard officers talking about the investigation, he responded, “Dad came home, I shot him in the head, what investigation?” according to a Mesa police report released Wednesday.
Almost laughing, the teen told police, “along with murder, can you put me down for truancy, I ditched today,” the report said. “Can we clean up this before my mom gets home, I don’t want her to come home and see my dad dead.”
Later, he told detectives he was angry with his father but couldn’t remember the reason. “But I was mad at him very much and I wish I could take everything back; I wish this was a bad dream but it’s not.”
Hughstan said during an interview with a homicide detective that he considered committing suicide in front of his father after finding a shotgun and ammunition in the garage of their home, but decided to murder his father instead and then commit suicide.
Hughstan apparently surprised his father, Ted Schlicker, who was standing in the kitchen when the boy approached him from behind, aimed the gun and pulled the trigger as the family dog brushed against the teen’s leg, the report said.
Police arrested Hughstan after the slaying in the 100 block of South 56th St., at the Pueblo Seco Condominiums, and accused him of first-degree murder. Ted Schlicker, 49, was found on the floor with his pistol still holstered on his hip.
After the slaying, “the defendant first called his friend and told her what he had done. He told her he was going to kill himself but she told him not to. She convinced him to call the police and deal with the situation,” the report said.
An officer guarding the homicide scene was approached later that afternoon by Treva and Clayton Crull, who told him that their son was Hughstan’s best friend. They told the officer that when they came home from work, they discovered a message on their answering machine from Hughstan saying “he would not see them for a long time because he just killed his father. They said at first they thought it was a joke, but they tried to call Hughstan back several times, but they got no answer,” the report said.
In a subsequent interview with detectives, Treva Crull said she “thought very highly of Hughstan and said he was a polite boy.” She said her son and Hughstan often spent the night at each other’s house. The boys met when they were in third grade.
Treva Crull said her son told her that Hughstan wasn’t at Brimhall Junior High School that day, where they went to school together, but that Hughstan had missed class before and it wasn’t unusual.
Hughstan told police that he called in sick to school that day, faking his father’s voice, and spent the day lounging around the house.
The Crull’s son also told police that Ted Schlicker always carried a handgun, but she never saw him take it out of the holster. The boy also said he never saw Hughstan handle a gun and never “expressed any curiosity with the many guns in the home,” the report said.
Police seized numerous guns from the home during the investigation, according to the report.
Hughstan told detectives that he used the Internet to communicate with his friends, and that two of his friends helped him when he tried to commit suicide a couple of weeks earlier. The report had no details.
Since his father took the Internet away, Hughstan said he was “just so depressed all the time,” the report said.
When his father came home, Hughstan said he pointed the 12-gauge shotgun at his father “and I was getting ready to pull the trigger” when his dog walked by and brushed his leg. He said he glanced down at the dog and squeezed the trigger, the report said.
“I know it’s not an accident I did intentionally kill,” he told police.
The transcribed tape Hughston’s interview with detectives shows his mother entered the room at some point and began participating.
“I know, I know it happened, we have to get passed this, it’s not going to change anything between you and me,” Judy Schlicker said. “You’re still my son and I love you no matter what OK? I’ll be there whenever you need me.”
Judy Schlicker then started crying. When she asked Hughstan why he shot his father, he said, “I didn’t really mean to. I was just planning to scare him.”
Hughstan then contradicted what he had told detectives earlier, telling his mother that he accidentally squeezed the trigger and shot his father.