'He was more than I could live with': Jury watches video of teen confessing to killing father

By Brian Amaral  February 07, 2015 at 8:18 AM, updated February 07, 2015 at 12:…

Georgia (Feb 10, 2015)By Brian Amaral  February 07, 2015 at 8:18 AM, updated February 07, 2015 at 12:16 PM


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John Mahoney was done lying about who shot his father. 

After nearly four hours of interrogation, Mahoney, then 19, finally began to crack. It was just hours after he'd killed Jerry Mahoney, a beloved Piscataway police officer, at their township home the morning of Dec. 27, 2007

"Any time I did something wrong it was an excuse for him to hit me, God help me if I tried to fight back," Mahoney told Shawn Raypach of the Piscataway Police Department and Eleazar Ricardo of the Middlesex County Prosecutor's Office after finally confessing. "He was more than I could live with." 

Jurors in John Mahoney's murder trial watched the taped confession Tuesday and Wednesday as prosecutors sought to convince them that John Mahoney was a remorseless killer motivated by hatred and greed.

Mahoney's attorney, William Fetky, team has not denied that John Mahoney shot and killed Jerry Mahoney. Instead, they're arguing that the shooting was an act of self-defense by a young man whose father had subjected him to years of physical and psychological abuse. In the taped interrogation, Mahoney becomes more expansive about the abuse he says he suffered as he got closer to confessing to killing his father. 

For several hours during his interrogation, though, Mahoney kept up an unlikely ruse. Mahoney had told police that a stranger had broken into the home, shot Jerry Mahoney, and then shot John Mahoney in the arm during a brief struggle. The man was average height, average build, unremarkable, and fled out the back door.  …

"It's not uncommon for the act to take place when the parent is in a compromised situation, like asleep, or lying down," said Jeffrey L. Helms, a professor at Kennesaw State University in Georgia and the author of a study on the topic, in an interview with NJ Advance Media. "Children are no physical match for their parents, and their fear is so great."


A leader in innovative teaching and learning, Kennesaw State University offers undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees to its nearly 43,000 students. With 11 colleges on two metro Atlanta campuses, Kennesaw State is a member of the University System of Georgia. The university’s vibrant campus culture, diverse population, strong global ties and entrepreneurial spirit draw students from throughout the country and the world. Kennesaw State is a Carnegie-designated doctoral research institution (R2), placing it among an elite group of only 6 percent of U.S. colleges and universities with an R1 or R2 status. For more information, visit kennesaw.edu