Police searching for motive after pregnant woman allegedly strangled by stepson

Florida police were searching for a motive after a man allegedly strangled his pregnant stepmother at a cemetery last week.

Ian Anselmo, 21, was charged with second-degree attempted murder after he allegedly admitted to killing his stepmother Sue Ellen Anselmo at Eustis Cemetery in Lake County, the Orlando Sentinel reported Thursday. The woman was a mother of six and was six-weeks pregnant at the time of her death.

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“I killed my mom, she’s dead,” Anselmo told 911 dispatchers. “I strangled her.”

Anselmo was booked into the Lake County Jail on the charges and prosecutors were likely going to upgrade the charges because the woman died, the Orlando Sentinel reported. Authorities didn’t give a motive as to why Anselmo allegedly committed the crime.

Sue Ellen Anselmo was found unconscious with a cord around her neck in the front seat of her SUV, according to the newspaper. It wasn’t clear why Anselmo or his stepmother were at the cemetery.

Ian Anselmo had initially thought he killed his stepmother at the cemetery, but she was rushed to the hospital with a “faint pulse” and died Monday, the newspaper reported.

“This whole thing seems so weird,” John Anselmo, Sue Ellen’s husband and Ian’s father, told the Orlando Sentinel. “We’re just racking our brains trying to figure out what happened.”

John Anselmo added that he and his wife had recently separated but he was anticipating a reconciliation, according to the newspaper. His mother-in-law, though, attempted to become the guardian of Sue Ellen Anselmo while she was in the hospital, saying that John Anselmo was a “person of interest” in the investigation.

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John Anselmo denied the allegations. Eustis police haven’t said whether John Anselmo was a person of interest in Sue Ellen Anselmo’s death.