Charges: 90-year-old shot son after disagreement over TV


A 90-year-old Maplewood father fatally shot his adult son in the house the two shared after a disagreement over where to watch TV, according to charges filed Monday in Ramsey County.

Kenneth Bowser is charged with second-degree murder in the death of his son, 65-year-old Larry Bowser.

The younger Bowser was found Saturday night by police in the home on the 1200 block of Hilltop Court, after the elder Bowser called police and told them he shot his son, the criminal complaint says.

Police also interviewed neighbors, who said Kenneth Bowser suffered from worsening dementia; but when asked, Bowser said his only health problems were "old age and high blood pressure," according to the complaint.

Kenneth Bowser made "spontaneous utterances" after police arrived, including: mentioning someone stole a car and driver's license; having to "put up with" things at 91 years old; and talking about "that kid" he shot that night who "worked at the car wash," the complaint says.

He later told police he was trying to scare his son when he fired at him, so he'd leave the bedroom TV alone, the complaint says.

A neighbor told the Star Tribune that the son was very nice and did odd jobs around the neighborhood. He also made sure not to leave his father home alone for too long.

Kenneth Bowser is scheduled to appear in court Tuesday, the attorney's office says.

According to the criminal complaint:

Officers arrived to the home around 7:40 p.m. Saturday to find Kenneth Bowser at the door, after he called 911 to report he shot his son. He was handcuffed and sat in his wheelchair, and told police his son was upstairs.

Responders found the son without a pulse, and a revolver with one fired casing in it was sitting on the living room chair.

In an interview with police later, Bowser said he heard a news report about a son setting his father on fire, and he was worried that the same thing would happen to him. Bowser also said his son had been complaining about having to take care of him.

On the night of the shooting, Larry Bowser asked his dad to watch football in the living room with him. The elder Bowser refused, so the son began unplugging the TV.

Wanting to scare his son, Kenneth Bowser fired a shot above the man's head, then another that struck him. He then called 911.

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