A mentally ill man who was welcomed into a Minnesota family’s home beat a mother and her son to death with a pipe wrench — and then told police he did so because they were “weird,” authorities said.
William Lynn Hillman, 21, was charged Thursday in Otter Tail County District Court with two counts of second-degree murder in the deaths of Denise McFadzen, 42, and her 21-year-old son Dalton McFadzen, the Star Tribune reports.
Denise McFadzen and Dalton McFadzenGoFundMe
Both victims were found at about 5 a.m. Tuesday at a home in Gorman Township, roughly 100 miles away from Cass County, where Hillman had been ruled mentally ill in 2016 after punching his mother and threatening to kill her, court records show.
The body of Denise McFadzen was found just outside the home; her son’s body was found in a bed inside the residence. Both had been beaten in the head with a large pipe wrench, which was later found covered in blood and “other matter,” according to a criminal complaint.
Hillman then called police from a nearby home and told officers he did a “bad thing” and needed to be apprehended. He later apologized for the killings during questioning by police, according to the complaint.
“I’m sorry,” Hillman said. “I’m sorry I did it.”
Hillman admitted to an officer that the McFadzens — who took him in six weeks earlier, he said — had never threatened him in any way.
Hillman “said they were just ‘weird,” according to the criminal complaint.
Hillman also told an officer he was charged with a felony after punching his mother in 2016, but prosecutors dropped the case due to his mental illness, which led to his commitment to the Minnesota Security Hospital at St. Peter for treatment of schizophrenia.
Hillman was treated at the facility until November 2017 — roughly the same time he stopped taking medication for his mental illness, he said.
An online fundraiser created to offset funeral costs characterized Denise McFadzen and her son as two of the “kindest, caring, loving” people imaginable.
“They were kind enough to let someone in their lives without knowing the end result,” the website reads. “They are not wealthy by any means [and] are struggling with the fact they have to bury a mother and her son with little to no finances.”