Cops: Paranoid Man Shot and Killed Girl at Soccer Practice

The family friend had spoke of 'mind control' prior to the shooting
By Michael Harthorne,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 5, 2015 12:20 PM CST
Cops: Paranoid Man Shot and Killed Girl at Soccer Practice
Emma Watson Nowling   (Taylor Police Department)

Police say the man who shot and killed a 7-year-old girl after her soccer practice Thursday in Michigan believed someone was "out to get him" and trying to use "mind control" on him, Fox 2 Detroit reports. According to the Detroit Free Press, Timothy Obeshaw was a family friend of Emma Watson Nowling and her mother Sharon Watson and had been living with them until recently. All three were at the soccer practice in Taylor before the shooting, and things seemed fine. "Obeshaw had been seen at the beginning of the practice embracing the young girl," Fox quotes the Taylor police chief. "She was embracing him back as if there was no problem." Emma's coach, Mario Scicluna, tells the Free Press he saw Emma run to hug Obeshaw on the sidelines before returning to practice.

Police aren't sure why, but things changed drastically after practice was over. Emma and her mother had just gotten in the car to leave when Obeshaw shot them and then himself, Fox reports. Both Obeshaw and Emma died. Watson is in serious condition. According to the Free Press, police haven't identified a motive for the shooting yet, but family members say Obeshaw was "mentally unstable." Fox points out Obeshaw had a valid conceal-carry permit and his gun was registered. About 40 children had been at Thursday's soccer practice. "A lot of the families are in shock and were traumatized by what happened," Scicluna tells the Free Press. There will be a moment of silence for Emma before this weekend's soccer games. "She was a fun, excited girl," Scicluna says. "She had a bright future ahead of her." (More child murder stories.)

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