Mom and son got into an argument. She used her gun to get the ‘last word,’ Florida deputies say

Prisecilla Etheridge, 66, is charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.
Prisecilla Etheridge, 66, is charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. Bay County Jail

A Florida mother’s attempt to get the final word in an argument with her son last weekend resulted in both of them getting arrested, according to sheriff’s deputies.

Officers responded to a domestic violence report at a supermarket in Panama City Beach, Florida on Saturday. When they arrived, Prisecilla Etheridge, 66, told them what allegedly happened earlier between her and her son, Mart Hicks, 46, they said.

Etheridge had started arguing with Hicks over her nephew moving into her home, said a police report from the Bay County Sheriff’s Office. Etheridge asked him to leave after he became aggressive, deputies said. But he allegedly took Etheridge’s car despite not having a valid driver’s license. When he returned hours later, she confronted him about it, police said.

Hicks got angry and began taunting and mocking his mother, the report said. Then fled the home on his bike when she threatened to call the police.

While Etheridge was telling police about her son at the supermarket, police looked him up and realized he had an active warrant, the report said. Police stopped Hicks and detained him after spotting him on his bike. That’s when he explained why he shouldn’t be the only one in trouble, according to authorities.

Hicks told police his mother had used a handgun to shoot at him and wanted to press charges, the police report said. Etheridge didn’t deny having a firearm or firing it, but said she “didn’t shoot it at him, just in his direction,” deputies said. Police arrested them both.

Investigators found out more when they talked to Etheridge’s nephew, Keith Dotson, the sheriff’s office said. Dotson told police his aunt, who he says sometimes has “fits of rage,” was arguing with Hicks before he took off on his bike.

Hicks' departure apparently ticked his mom off, and she allegedly said, “I’ll be damned if I let him win this,” before grabbing her firearm and chasing her son in her car while he was on his bike, according to Dotson’s account. She might have also said, “I’ll be damned if I let him have the last word,” police said, reported the News Herald.

Hicks told police he’d been riding his bike when she drove up next to him, yelled that she was going to shoot him and then fired her gun, authorities said. He wasn’t hurt but said the bullet came “very close” to him, according to the News Herald.

Etheridge is charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, the police report said.

Whether someone has asked you for help or you sense someone is in distress, here are some general guidelines to help support possible victims of abuse, be it physical, emotional, sexual, psychological or financial.