A Virginia woman was sentenced to 18 years in prison after murdering her mother with a shotgun.
Rachel Leigh Hutson, 21, pleaded guilty to charges of first-degree murder and use of a firearm for fatally shooting her mother at their home in Chesapeake, Virginia, in November 2013, The Virginian-Pilot reports.
The murder happened the day after Thanksgiving, while Donald Hudson, Rachel's father, was shopping on Black Friday. Rachel testified that she pointed the shotgun towards her mother, Susan Lee Hutson. The 58-year-old woman reportedly said she was crazy and did not think she was serious. The mother warned that Donald would punish her when he returned home.
When Rachel's father called the house, she told him what she had done. As Donald hung up, because he didn't believe her, she texted him a photo of her mother's body, according to court documents.
"That's when I realized this is probably real," Donald testified.
Rachel also testified that she had been initially planning to kill herself, but did not want her mother to find her body. She commented that her mother's murder had been an afterthought.
“I felt like I was just nothing, and nobody really needed us,” Rachel said.
Sarah Hutson, Rachel's sister, believes her sister was mentally ill. She testified that Rachel sometimes had "fits of rage." Rachel is now reportedly taking at least four medications, which have changed her emotions from a "tornado" to a "whirlwind," she said.
Rachel, who was 19 when she killed her mother, had reportedly been her mother's caregiver since she was 9 years old. Susan had medical conditions including diabetes, congestive heart failure and kidney failure, reports Daily Mail.
Donald testified that earlier that morning, he had punished his daughter by removing her computer privileges because of her bad attitude and cluttered bedroom.
After seeing the photo of his wife's body, Donald reportedly planned to make his daughter come out of their home so he could tackle her and tie her up. Rachel left the house calmly, so he decided to just call police to arrest her.
Rachel asked the judge for mercy so she could have a chance at life.
“I don’t think I ever really had a chance,” she admitted.