Daughter says she's forgiven man accused of killing mother

by: Ken Lemon Updated:


GASTON COUNTY, N.C. - The daughter of a woman who was killed said she forgives the man accused of killing her mother.

The judge didn't grant bond for Charles Venn. However, the judge wants a mental evaluation performed first.

Venn is accused of killing his 80-year-old roommate, Vivian Schronce, when she came home from church Sunday.

The victim's daughter stood up in court to convince the judge that Venn is not a threat to the public.

Leanna Catoe cried as she addressed the judge for several minutes.

She said the 88-year-old Venn and her mother were companions who loved each other.

"I looked at Charles like a father," she said.

She said she has forgiven Venn for allegedly shooting and killing her mother last spring, because her mother would want her to forgive him.

"I know that he is living in his own hell for what he did," Catoe said. "I do forgive him. I really, really do."

Other family members, including Catoe's daughter, disagree.

"He murdered my grandmother," Jamie Williams said. "He should stay locked up and live with what he done."

Venn's attorney said Venn accidentally shot Schronce during an argument.

Prosecutors said that wasn't the fatal shot.

"The defendant fired a second shot right into the chest of the victim," said Brandon Graham, prosecutor.

The prosecution said it could take up to three months to perform a mental evaluation and present the findings in court.

Sign up for the WSOC-TV newsletter here.