84-Year Old Kills Son over Not Buying Cable, Tries to Stab Self to Death

The suspect had just gotten off the phone with his pastor when he shot his son, according to a criminal complaint.

Police said the pastor told them Pang Se Vang was upset that his son would not pay to install cable television in the home, the complaint said.

Chue Vang responded that his father had the option to move out. Chue Vang had bought the house with his sister, See Vang Yang, according to an affidavit filed in support of a search warrant.

Pang Se Vang locked himself in a bedroom and claimed to have knives with him, the search warrant affidavit said. Maplewood police officer Kao Xiong called the defendant on the phone and talked with him in Hmong, the suspect’s native language. Kao Xiong told him to come out with his hands up.

“The defendant replied that he could not because he had stabbed himself in the chest and was on the bed,” the complaint said. “He said that he stabbed himself because he wanted to die.”

He and the dead son had argued, he said, and he grabbed his hunting shotgun.

“He admitted that he loaded it, pointed it at his son and shot him,” the complaint said.

He didn’t want to settle the issue in court, he told the officer. “He would settle the dispute with his son when they reached the afterlife,” the complaint said.

After a two-hour standoff, Pang Se Vang complied with the officer’s request to hold his hands up near a window so that police could locate him in the house.

A Ramsey County SWAT team moved in and found Pang Se Vang on the bed, “covered in blood on his chest, stomach and neck.” A large knife lay about 6 inches away. He was taken by ambulance to Regions Hospital, where he was treated for the self-inflicted wounds to his neck and abdomen, and was formally arrested Tuesday.

Pang Se Vang’s wife…said Pang Se Vang had been talking on the phone in the bedroom that morning with their pastor. He then came to the kitchen to eat.

“(The victim) told his father that if he had any worries, he should talk to his sons about it,” the complaint said. Pang Se Vang replied, “I’m not talking with you kids,” according to his wife.

He went back to the bedroom, and Chue Vang followed him.

That’s when Pang Se Vang’s wife heard a gunshot and saw their son fall backwards into the hallway.

She asked him why he shot their son.

“He said, ‘If you are not afraid of dying, then come in and bother me. If you are afraid of dying then you better run away,’ ” the wife recalled.

Maplewood police Chief Paul Schnell said the family described Pang Se Vang as being “very militaristic, very patriarchal … (a) my-way-or-the-highway kind of orientation …”

A family member said he had been a member of the Laotian military.

It was not a self-defense case, Schnell said. “This is murder stemming from a dispute that really would not be of unusual significance in anybody’s life. … It’s tremendously hard to wrap your head around.”

Maplewood man, 84, killed son in cable TV dispute, charges say. TwinCities.com, 3/27/2014.

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