Court docs: Hope murder suspect suffers from dementia

James Mee

HOPE, Ind. –  A Hope man was suffering from dementia when he stabbed his son to death and beat his wife, according to court documents.

James Mee, 77, faces preliminary charges of murder and domestic battery. He is accused of killing his son, 50-year-old Charles Mee, and beating his wife, 78-year-old Barbara Mee.

The murder investigation began on January 7 around 6:40 a.m. after dispatchers received a 911 call from Charles.

He told dispatchers, “My dad stabbed me in the throat.” He became unresponsive a short time later.

Hope Police Chief Matthew Tallent was the first person to arrive to the scene in the 200 block of Scott Street. Tallent is Charles’ cousin and James’ nephew.

He found Charles sitting in a recliner and suffering from serious injuries. Medics transported him to the hospital, but he was pronounced dead at a short time later.

The second person to arrive at the scene was a Hope Fire Department volunteer. He saw James walking in the driveway with a broken stick. He asked James, “What’s going on?” and he said James replied, “He‘s in there…I stabbed him…he‘s dead…I probably killed him.”

Tallent handcuffed James and a sheriff’s deputy removed two knives from his pockets.

James told the deputy he and his wife had been held hostage by a male and female, and someone had thrown him to the ground and injured his back.

He was transported to the hospital along with Barbara who was also injured in the incident.

Police interviewed Barbara at the hospital. She said James told her he stabbed their son. When she went to check on him, she said James beat her. She added, “James is a sick man. He’s sick. He didn’t know what he was doing.”

Other family members also reported James was suffering from dementia and signs of paranoia directed, in particular, at Charles and Barbara.

James was arrested and booked into the county jail.

A coroner confirmed Charles’ cause of death was a combination of a deep stab wound to his neck and blunt force trauma to his head.

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