Steven Pratt Out of Prison Less Than 48 Hours, Kills Mother After ‘Welcome Home’ Party

Steven Pratt
Steven Pratt

*Steven Pratt, 45, walked out of prison a free last man last Friday after serving a 30-year sentence for killing his neighbor in 1984.

Less than 48-hours later, he went home and killed his mother.

Police found 64-year-old Gwendolyn Pratt, who had thrown a welcome home party for her son just hours earlier, at 6:30 a.m. Sunday in her Atlantic City home, according to reports by The Press of Atlantic City. An autopsy confirmed her death was from massive blunt injuries to the head, according to a statement by Atlantic County prosecutor Jim McClain.

Pratt, her son, was detained at the scene and charged with murder. He is being held on $1 million bail, and according to a recently released video, against the interviewers warnings, Pratt said he has no interest in a trial and as of that time, had not retained an attorney.

Pratt’s family apparently threw him a big ‘Welcome Home’ party following his release, according to a neighbor of the victim who talked to the press. The neighbor, Ruan Tilghman-Pugh, claims Pratt needed a place to stay after he got out and had asked a cousin if he could crash at his place because he had a disagreement with an aunt he had stayed with over the weekend.

“He said: ‘Cuz, I need to live with you. Aunt CeCe, she be on me,'” Tilghman-Pugh told the paper.

“It’s so devastating,” Tilghman-Pugh said. “You just never know what people are going through.”

Though Pratt was only 15 at the time, he had been tried as an adult for the 1984 killing of his next-door neighbor, Michael Anderson, in an Atlantic City apartment building in 1984. He was convicted of first-degree murder in 1986 and received a 30-year prison sentence, which was concluded on Friday.

Court records show Pratt and Anderson had argued after Pratt and some of his friends refused to leave an apartment hallway where they were hanging out and making noise. Pratt came back to Anderson’s apartment with a lead pipe, but Anderson took the pipe away from Pratt and bloodied his face, according to the newspaper.

Pratt returned with a borrowed handgun and shot Anderson in the face and shoulder. Anderson, who Pratt claims acted like a father to him, died days after the shooting.

UPDATE: Steven Pratt is seen crying and apparently distraught i n this video as he makes a court appearance, where he is being told his rights and asked if he understands them by an off-camera deputy.


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