- Associated Press - Friday, January 6, 2017

SPARTANBURG, S.C. (AP) - The lawyer for a 39-year-old man charged with killing his parents says his father pleaded to shoot them because they were in poor health.

Authorities say Stephen Belcher was charged with murder in November after police found the bodies of 69-year-old Henrietta and William Belcher covered with sheets about 10 days after they were killed in their Inman home. They were shot several times in the head.

The Herald-Journal of Spartanburg reports (https://bit.ly/2iQ0NFh ) that defense lawyer Doug Brannon said at Stephen Belcher’s bond hearing that his wife and his brother heard William Belcher plead with his son to kill him and his wife.

Brannon says Stephen Belcher’s mom couldn’t communicate after several strokes, and his father had a severe substance abuse problem.

A judge will decide Belcher’s bail later.

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