Florida woman charged with manslaughter after claiming man fell on knife

Florida woman charged with manslaughter after claiming man fell on knife
Lillian Patterson was arrested by Marion County Sheriff's deputies. (Marion County Sheriff's Office)

MARION COUNTY, Fla. — A 19-year-old Florida woman was arrested Saturday morning after claiming a 19-year-old man fell on a knife at a home near McIntosh, the Marion County Sheriff’s Office said.

Firefighters said they were called to the home shortly before 9:15 p.m. Friday after it was reported that someone was under cardiac arrest.

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Firefighters said they discovered Lillian Patterson, of Micanopy, several small children and the body of Xavier Collins.

Firefighters said Patterson told them Collins stumbled out of the bedroom, collapsed and was unresponsive.

Investigators said Patterson then said Collins had fallen onto a knife held by one of the children.

They said Patterson then said she and a small child were both holding knives when Collins fell onto one of the knives.

Detectives said they took Patterson to the Sheriff’s Office, where she told them that earlier in the night, she was approached by a 2‐year‐old child who was holding a steak knife, and she took the knife from the child.

“Patterson claims she held the knife in her right hand while scrolling on her phone with her left,” said Cecelia Koon, a Sheriff’s Office spokesperson. “Patterson admitted to being right-handed.”

Deputies said she then told them that while she was still holding the knife, she and Collins began wrestling.

"Patterson told detectives she pushed Collins off her with her left hand, causing the victim to fall onto the knife she was holding in her right hand," Koon said. "Patterson changed her statement multiple times regarding where she was holding the knife."

Patterson was booked into the Marion County Jail on charges of manslaughter.