Utah Man Killed Mother at Dinner Table, Danced with Sister Beside Body

Mike Lopez, 23
Utah County Jail

Mike Lopez has been charged with murder after allegedly firing a shotgun into his mother’s head at the dinner table, then dancing with his sister beside her corpse.

According to police documents, 23-year-old Lopez sat down at the dinner table with a shotgun. His youngest sister, 14, nodded before leaving the room, while his 17-year-old sister got up and locked herself in the adjacent bathroom. “I know you’re going to kill me, and I love you,” Ramirez is said to have told her son. He then “fired a single shot, striking her in the neck and face, killing her almost instantly.”

At this point, according to the affidavit, the 14-year-old returned to the room to stroke her mother’s hair, before Lopez took her hand and began dancing with her. Meanwhile, the 17-year-old sibling escaped through the bathroom window to call a relative who then alerted police.

Law enforcement authorities arrived at the scene to find Lopez sitting in a filled bathtub, with the shotgun leaning against it. An officer statement said that while Lopez showed no sign of injury, he was “acting unresponsive.”

Court papers say that as he was being booked into the Utah County jail, he was told that he was being charged with his mother’s murder. In response, Lopez “nodded his head affirmatively and began to cry. He subsequently told the officer, ‘Someone told me to do it.'”

Lopez’ 17-year-old sister told authorities she believed her older brother and younger sister had been smoking marijuana together. According to the affidavit, “she stated Mike has been acting really strange lately where he has been meditating a lot where he claims to go to different dimensions and talking about a lot of bad people.”

Officers said the 14-year-old girl was “acting very strange” when interviewed about the killing — at times not showing any emotion, or even singing. She told detectives she and Lopez “have been together a lot lately and they take turns sleeping so they can watch over one another,” and further claimed it was not actually her mother who was shot. She also reportedly smiled when asked about dancing with Lopez.

Lopez has been charged with murder, domestic violence in the presence of a child, and possession of a weapon by a restricted person. His case was transferred to the 4th District Court in American Fork on Monday, and he is scheduled to appear in court on January 12.

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