A Nevada man charged with shooting his 14-year-old son to death last week disapproved of the teen’s sexual orientation and had threatened him over it, friends said.
Wendell Melton, 53, told police he accidentally shot his son, Giovanni Melton, Thursday during a heated argument over the boy skipping school, Henderson police said. Melton told police his son shoved him to the ground. He said he got up, pulled a handgun and accidentally shot the teen in the chest, according to a police report obtained by the Las Vegas Review-Journal.
Giovanni, who was allowed by his father to live alone in the apartment outside Las Vegas, was pronounced dead at a nearby hospital, police said.
Wendell Melton, who police said has a prior conviction for domestic battery, was charged with murder, illegal possession of a gun, and child abuse or neglect. He was jailed on $808,000 bond. Police were still investigating how he obtained a handgun with his criminal record.
Sonja Jones, who said she once took care of Giovanni, said she believes Melton wanted his son dead.
“Giovanni was abused physically and mentally and spiritually for many, many years,” Jones told News 3 Las Vegas.
“He hated the fact that his son was gay,” she said of Melton. She added that she had heard from Giovanni’s friends that his father once pulled a gun on him after finding him with his boyfriend. “I’m sure that inside of his mind, he would rather have a dead son than a gay son,” she said.
Jones didn’t immediately return HuffPost’s request for comment.
ABC 13 News reported Giovanni’s high school friends said Melton disapproved of his son’s sexual orientation, which caused family problems.
Police told HuffPost that the investigation so far…