A 54-year-old businessman in the United States has admitted to accidentally shooting his teen girlfriend during a “play” gun fight.
The body of 18-year-old Lora Grace Duncan was found in a Florida hotel room on October 29 after her concerned family reported her missing.
Ms Duncan’s father Burton Duncan told police she had been in a relationship with Michael Troy Hutto, who is the co-founder of clothing label Salt Life, local station WPTV reports.
Mr Duncan told police his daughter had been acting out of character and he alleged Mr Hutto “gave drugs to his daughter to keep her sedated”, First Coast News reported.
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Police were able to find the location of Ms Duncan’s body after her father tracked her phone to the hotel room, which was booked in Mr Hutto’s name, they found a “strong odour” and the teen’s dead body in the bathroom.
Authorities discovered Hutto had been admitted to hospital a day before Ms Duncan was found dead.
According to police, Mr Hutto was “twitching, making delusional comments and crying while his eyes were rolling into the back of his head”.
“Oh my God, I think I hurt my Gracie,” the affidavit alleges he told police at the hospital.
In a later police interview, Mr Hutto said he and Ms Duncan had travelled to visit his friends when they decided to stop overnight at Hilton Singer Island oceanfront resort in Palm Beach, Florida.
He claimed they had been “playing” and pretending “they were shooting with their finger and a gun” while Ms Duncan sat on the bathroom counter.
Mr Hutto said he had pointed the gun at her and it fired, shooting Ms Duncan fatally in the stomach.
He fled, leaving his wallet and ID in the room which police discovered alongside Ms Duncan’s body.
Mr Hutto told police he had left with the gun in his backpack and drove until he ran out of petrol at a service station.
He was discovered there parked illegally and behaving erratically, which resulted in him being admitted to hospital.
On Monday, Mr Hutto appeared in court where he was charged with manslaughter and possession of a firearm, First Coast News reports.
He will next appear in court on December 8.