Man accused of killing his mother near park in New Milford

Published: Jun. 5, 2023 at 7:53 PM EDT|Updated: Jun. 6, 2023 at 7:03 AM EDT
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NEW MILFORD, CT (WFSB) – A man is accused of killing his mother near a park in New Milford on Monday, according to police.

New Milford police said 34-year-old Eric Meagan called 911 and reported that he had just killed his mother in the area of the Still River near Harrybrook Park. Police received the call around 8:25 a.m.

Eric Meagan is accused of murdering his mother near a park in New Milford on June 5, according...
Eric Meagan is accused of murdering his mother near a park in New Milford on June 5, according to police.(New Milford police)

Police later identified the victim as 56-year-old Victoria Palmer.

The mother and son were on the river walk, one of their favorite spots. Meagan put his mother in a headlock and drowned her, police said.

“The caller remained on the phone for several minutes and described the events that led to the incident and his location along the river,” New Milford police said.

Officers found Palmer at the scene. She was taken to New Milford Hospital where she later died.

Meagan was taken into custody without incident. He was charged with murder.

“It just strikes me as sad the whole incident just is,” said New Milford Police Chief Spencer Cerruto. “The entire case is disturbing. It’s tragic and sad. The worst case of domestic violence.”

Eyewitness News obtained the police report.

Meagan told officers: “I tried to drown my mom… to keep the demons away.” Meagan added: “he feels god will forgive him.”

Police stopped by the Reagan family home in New Milford to speak with Meagan’s father and Palmer’s husband.

He told police Meagan: “had been noncompliant with his medication” and has mental health issues, and that “2-3 years ago Eric began talking about demons being after him.”

Meagan also admitted he strangled and killed one of the family cats last week.

Terry and Jamie Carroll were walking in the park Tuesday.

“It’s just kind of nerve wracking. Knowing that this happened here,” said Terry Carroll.

“A little eerie,” Jamie Carroll said.

Meagan’s bond was set at $2 million. He appeared in court Tuesday in Torrington.

A public defender said Meagan won’t be able to pay it and he’ll be back in court in the middle of July.

“There are no other suspects being sought at this time. There is no further danger to the public regarding this incident,” police said.

The director for Harrybrook Park spoke to Channel 3.

”Just a tragic moment for the park and for the family and our hearts go out to the family,” said Bill Buckbee, Harrybrook park director. “It’s a beautiful peaceful place and it’s just awful to have something like this happen.”

James Watson, a longtime park visitor, said he was shocked and saddened to hear what happened.

“I don’t know what happened, it’s kind of a shock. It’s sad,” Watson said. “Other than that, it’s very safe and a beautiful park. It’s sad that it happened and you just pray for both parties and families involved.”