A Baldwin County man pleaded guilty Friday to murder and two counts of aggravated animal cruelty Friday in the stabbing death of his mother and her two dogs.
Steve Barrett, 58, also pleaded guilty to exploitation of an elderly person. He was sentenced to life in prison plus 10 years, Ocmulgee Judicial Circuit District Attorney Steve Bradley said
Barrett lived with his mother, 76-year-old Sandra Brantley at her Lake Sinclair home.
At about 2 p.m. March 16, 2016, Barrett asked someone down the street to call 911 because he said someone had broken into his mother’s house and killed her and her dogs, Bradley said.
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Further investigation showed Brantley had been dead for quite some time and Barrett had rummaged through the house and taken some of his mother’s things.
In the hours before Barrett reported his mother’s death, he’d gone on a shopping spree, buying mouthwash at a dollar store and a computer from an office supply store, Bradley said.
He also visited a liquor store and tried to cash one of his mother’s checks at a local bank. A teller at the bank became concerned — for a reason that still isn’t clear — and halted the transaction, the district attorney said.
Barrett was arrested later that day.
Barrett, an only child, had a history of violence against his mother and the Baldwin County Sheriff’s Office had responded to a number of domestic violence incidents at their home on Bill Johnson Road.
Information from Telegraph archives was used in this report.