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Suspect in slaying at University Hospital denied bond

Friday, Nov. 2, 2012 10:35 AM
Last updated Saturday, Nov. 3, 2012 3:07 AM
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Bond was denied Friday for Charles Gorrell, the 85-year-old man accused of fatally shooting his nephew Oct. 16 on the seventh floor of University Hospital.

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Charles Gorrell, 85, is led into court for his bond hearing. Gorrell is accused of fatally shooting his nephew on the seventh floor of University Hospital last month.   EMILY ROSE BENNETT/STAFF
Charles Gorrell, 85, is led into court for his bond hearing. Gorrell is accused of fatally shooting his nephew on the seventh floor of University Hospital last month.

Superior Court Judge William M. Fleming Jr.’s decision followed an emotional hearing that aired new details about the family dispute leading up to the death of Tim Grooms, 59.

Assistant District Attorney Keith Johnson said Grooms held power of attorney for his aunt, who was admitted to University Hospital the day before for treatment of pneumonia. Johnson said Gorrell objected to some of the decisions made by Grooms about his wife’s care, and there were several disputes leading up to the shooting.

“Mr. Gorrell took exception to his status as power of attorney, which led to their conflicts,” Johnson said.

On Oct. 16, an argument developed over who would spend the night at the hospital. Witnesses said Gorrell used a black bag to take a gun into the hospital and fired four to six shots at Grooms, Johnson said.

Johnson opposed bond based on Gorrell’s behavior, which he said was “becoming increasingly erratic.”

“We’re worried about his access to other family members,” Johnson said.

Terry Grooms echoed those concerns, saying his brother was asked by his aunt after she was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease to take care of her and serve as executor of her estate. That was before she married Gorrell about 10 years ago, Grooms said.

“At some time in his demented mind, (Gorrell) decided if he could not call the shots for my aunt, then no one would,” Grooms said.

Speaking for the Gorrell family, attorney William Sussman provided a different picture of what he called “a tragic situation involving two families.”

Sussman said that Gorrell was trying to spend the night with his wife, but instead was told “aggressively” to “leave the hospital and not come back.”

He said that his client, who made no statement during the hearing but often dabbed at his eyes, has health problems, including congestive heart failure and diabetes. The suggestion that he could go after the Grooms family is unfounded, Sussman said.

“His ability to do anything is severely restricted,” Sussman said.

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shrimp for breakfast
shrimp for breakfast 11/02/12 - 11:23 am
It is definitely a tragedy.

All the way around. Killing his nephew made sure the short time this man has left will be spent in absolute torture.

itsanotherday1 11/02/12 - 12:54 pm
I don't buy the "Sussman said

I don't buy the "Sussman said that Gorrell was attempting to spend the night with his wife, but instead was told “aggressively” to “leave the hospital and not come back.” as a reason for the shooting; unless he left and came back with a gun after that conversation. Otherwise, he premeditately brought the gun with ill intent.

rmwhitley 11/02/12 - 06:05 pm
I've had dealings with sussman

before. Not sure what his motives are.

scorehouse 11/02/12 - 07:00 pm
so what

if he told him to leave? that's a reason to murder? congratulations to Judge Fleming once again!

JRC2024 11/03/12 - 09:06 am
I agree day1 that if he

I agree day1 that if he carried the gun in a bag into the hospital he had bad intentions. If he is sick now he was sick then and still capable to kill. Leave him in the jail.

Grandpa Jones
Grandpa Jones 11/03/12 - 10:51 am
Old enuff to know better

Maybe, if he was carrying a Bible in that bag instead of a gun, he wouldn't have to be wearing that orange outfit.

Jane18 11/03/12 - 02:51 pm
So Uncalled For

As I have said before, a person usually carries a weapon for one or two reasons, and it doesn't seem Mr. Gorrell had any reason to be in fear. It seems this old man harbored ill feelings for his nephew-in-law, and either out of jealousy or greed, maybe both, the beloved nephew of the aunt was killed/murdered. Mr.Gorrell should have considered his own illnesses, he is very fortunate to still be alive at 85, have congestive heart failure and diabetes. Very sad for the families..........

reba530 11/03/12 - 11:24 pm
Bond revoked why??? Yes I

Bond revoked why??? Yes I know what he did was bad but its not like this man is going out looking for people to shoot. All he wants to do is take care of his ill wife and on that not she probably is about as ill as you can get over this nonsense. There has to be more to this story than what has been told. Btw that painter sure had a really nice big ole house.

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