Police confirm body found off Jupiter beach is that of missing woman
Police believe son was tired of caring for mother
7:38 AM, Jan 5, 2014
1:39 PM, Jan 6, 2014
JUPITER, Fla. - Sebastian police continue to investigate the murder of Patricia Danna-Harrison after her body was found along a Jupiter beach Saturday morning, wrapped in a nylon boat cover with small boat anchors attached as weights.
Authorities confirmed Sunday the 67-year-old woman's body also showed signs of traumatic injuries before being dumped in the water.
Harrison's son, Alfred Geary, is now the main suspect in this case.
Police said his girlfriend, who also lived with Geary and Harrison, is not a suspect.
Police say Geary had a boat detailing business in Stuart with access to multiple boats. They are investigating whether or not he had access to the boats the night Harrison went missing. They have also taken canoes, Harrison's car, and Geary's truck into evidence.
Geary had lived with his mother for two to three years to take care of her as she had several medical conditions.
Neighbors of Harrison waited for weeks to learn where she could be.
"I didn't know them very well, but my heart, when I heard the story and heard what happened, it was in my heart," Neighbor Marion Jones said.
"It's startling what people are capable of," said neighbor Kevin Blackstone.
Blackstone said he was in frequent contact with his neighbor, Alfred Geary.
Blackstone says at times, he did express frustration with his mother.
"The frustration that she wouldn't listen to the doctor's limitations, mostly," Blackstone said.
It was a frustration, however, that Blackstone didn't think would make Geary become a suspect in his mother's murder.
Sebastian Police Detective Todd Finnegan says Geary also expressed that frustration in a police interview. "I said 'were you just tired of taking care of her, dealing with her issues?' And he admitted that he was," Finnegan said.
During that interview, Geary was also given a lie detection test. During the test, it showed that Geary was being deceptive when asked if he knew where his mom was or how she went missing.
"It was a gut feeling I felt something wasn't right, the story wasn't adding up," Finnegan said.
Finnegan says other clues linked Geary to Harrison's disappearance. He waited 48 hours to report her missing. He claimed he thought she was shopping, though her car and purse were still at the house.
He took his life just a few days after being interviewed. Detectives had an appointment to meet Geary at his home the day he committed suicide to collect DNA samples from Harrison's hair brush and toothbrush.
Neighbors say it's been a series of events they never expected could happen to someone they know.
"There was life in that house. There were lights. They were taking care of their property, and now it's like totally gone," Jones said. "You just don't know one day from the next. People just don't understand how quick life can go by."
"Every night we're coming home and just can't believe this happened right next door to us," Blackstone said.
Harrison's ex-husband says she had a heart of gold, and will be deeply missed.
Harrison's family is expected to arrive in Florida in a few days from Rhode Island to handle funeral arrangements.