A cancer-ridden woman given five years to live by doctors is being accused of killing her son. According to the Daily Mail, Deborah Rudibaugh admitted to firing the weapon that killed her 29-year-old son, Jacob Millison. The 68-year-old woman told police that after killing him, she dumped his body in a pit of manure and burned his bloodied mattress as well as his blankets.
Deborah Rudibaugh said she hid her 29-year-old son’s body because she knew she would be in jail for the rest of her life and wanted to live as a free woman before she died of cancer. She added that she planned to leave a note in a lock box confessing that she killed her son that would have be accessed upon her death.
Investigators believe the 68-year-old did not act alone and have also arrested her daughter, Stephanie Jackson, as well as her husband in connection with the crime, the Denver Post is reporting.
The alleged confession of murder brings to the fore Millison’s disappearance three years ago which took the family months to report to authorities. Friends were the ones who put pressure on the authorities, suspecting that the 29-year-old man had been murdered by people he knew.
Years after the shooting, Rudibaugh finally confessed that she shot her son in the head as he slept in his bed at the family ranch in the wee hours of May 16, 2015. In a series of interviews, Deborah told investigators that she threw the murder weapon—a.357 Ladysmith revolver into the Blue Mesa Reservoir, but the alleged weapon was found in her bedroom.
The 68-year-old justified the murder claiming that her son was violently abusive towards her, adding that two days before she killed him, he sat on her chest until she lost consciousness and often threatened her saying she would not be missed if he killed her.
The police took her story with a pinch of salt as she had previously also said that Jacob was a cocaine user and probably disappeared because of his drug business when his disappearance was being investigated. She also said her 29-year-old son demanded a “princess-like relationship,” where she was supposed to do everything for him. Deborah also mentioned that her son had a violent temper and that she had “holes in the walls” as proof.
However, police believe Jacob was killed over a squabble of who was going to inherit a 700-acre ranch worth millions of dollars.
Rudibaugh had inherited the ranch when her second husband, Rudi Rudibaugh passed in 2009. In her will, she planned to leave it to Jacob and her stepson, Shane Rudibaugh, but later amended the will to include her daughter, Stephanie. In another version of what led to Jacob’s death, Deborah said that her son went berserk when he found out his sister was included in the new will.
“I wrote up the will different and then he found the will and then he hit me and held me under water in the irrigation ditch and then told me he was going to change the will and he was going to get everything thing.”
Police have confirmed that there was conflict within the family. In 2013, Jacob Millison took a restraining order against Stephanie’s husband and the following year, his sister posted an online essay entitled “My younger brother is trying to ruin my life.” Two days after Jacob’s death, Stephanie reportedly posted “Have you ever woken up to awesome news, you wanted to run out screaming?”
A friend to Jacob, Max Matheny, said it was ridiculous to suggest that Millison took drugs or was ever aggressive. The 28-year-old said Jacob was a nice guy who told him that if anything ever happened to him, it would be his family that did it.
A missing person’s report that Rudibaugh lodged months later brought authorities to the ranch where human remains were discovered seven feet deep underneath a corral. It took a while to identify the decomposed body as Millison had never visited a dentist in his entire life, Montrose Press is reporting.