78-Year-Old Father Says He Was Strangled by 'Demon' in Son
The father of an Orland Park man charged with attempted murder said a demon with "slanted eyes and a blue-green face" caused his son to beat and strangle him.
OUTSIDE CHICAGO, IL -- A 78-year-old local man testified in court Thursday that a demon caused his son to attack, choke and beat him.
During a probable cause hearing that lasted more than 30 minutes in Judge Peter Felice's Bridgeview courtroom, George Williamson of Orland Park at times seemed reluctant to accuse his son, 46-year-old Mark Williamson, who has been charged with attempted murder and battery for the Nov. 11 incident — instead blaming the demon. Mark Williamson took care of his father, who has emphysema and heart disease, testimony revealed.
A public defender for Mark Williamson pointed out mental issues, saying he has not been taking his medication and hinted that he may use alcohol to self-medicate.
Sherie L. Dedore, an assistant state's attorney with the Seniors and Persons with Disabilities Unit, has been assigned the case and led the elder Williamson through a painstaking direct examination.
Mark Williamson, who is in custody on a no-bond order, was clad in khaki-colored Department of Corrections scrubs and remained silent during the hearing, except occasional whispers to the sheriff's deputy behind him.
The father sat in a wheelchair, hooked to an oxygen tube in front of the judge's bench during questioning. When Dedore asked him what happened on the evening of Nov. 11, there was a pause.
"My son walked up from the basement," George Williamson said. "I looked at him and asked him, 'Have you been drinking?'"
He haltingly continued, "It was not my son that came at me. It had slanted eyes and a blue-green face, a pointed face."
"But it was your son, wasn't it?" Dedore persisted.
"Somehow I fell from the chair...he...not Mark. The demon lunged at my neck. He put his hands around my throat."
As Dedore pressed for details, the elder Williamson said he couldn't remember, prompting her to produce a statement that she said he gave at the hospital. The father ultimately admitted that it was his signature on the statement.
"And you told the truth, is that correct?" Dedore asked.
"Right. Right," the father answered.
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George Williamson went on to testify that Mark Williamson slammed his head several times against the floor, or the demon inside Mark did, but "The Lord was there. The Lord reached him and he got up," he said.
"If he wanted to kill me, he would have killed me," George Williamson said. "He didn't want to kill me."
Judge, Public Defender Question Father
Attempting to get clarity from the elder Williamson, Judge Felice asked, "Was it the demon that night? Does the demon come out of your son when he drinks?"
Assistant Public Defender Samantha Blake objected to the question.
"No, I want to know," Felice said before addressing the elder Williamson noting, "I have to determine whether a crime has been committed it and who did it...now, you're either unwilling or unable to say it was your son."
"You're doing your job and you're right," the father said. "He was the one. I'm sorry."
During cross examination, Blake asked Williamson about his son's mental problems. The father said his son is on medication but hasn't taken it "for a while." Blake also questioned whether the father was on pain medication when he gave the statement in the hospital and if he read the statement before he signed.
"They had no reason to lie to me. I didn't read what I was signing," the father said.
In her questioning, Blake pointed out that when the elder Williamson had called 911, he told authorities that he fell. George Williamson didn't say that his son caused the injuries until after he'd had a visit from a friend, an Orland Park police officer, the questioning revealed.
"[The officer] had a fit, said I should have reported it immediately," said George Williamson, who also said the officer often comes by the house to check on the two.
"He thought Mark was doing real good...in fact, he thought he was doing super," George Williamson said.
Ultimately, the judge found probable cause to continue with the case. At the end of the hearing, the elder Williamson apologized again to the judge.
"You're in a very tough situation," Felice answered. "I appreciate your candor and honesty."
Mark Williamson is scheduled for arraignment on Dec. 20.
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