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Man Said 12-Year-Old Son Who Allegedly Helped Him Kill Mom Of Four ‘Earned His Man Card,’ Witness Claims

Colorado resident Heith Gleason and his 12-year-old son are both facing murder charges after allegedly killing a woman together and then fleeing to New Mexico.

By Sharon Lynn Pruitt

A Colorado man currently in police custody for allegedly murdering a woman may have said that his 12-year-old son, who is also in custody and is believed to have participated in the killing, "earned his man card" by being a part of the violent act.

Authorities believe that Heith Gleason and his 12-year-old son, Gage, are responsible for the death of Amy Garcia, a 41-year-old mother of four who was found dead near Gleason’s home in Walsenburg, Colorado on December 20, local outlet KOAA-TV reports. Garcia was found shot to death in a car that was set on fire, and a new witness statement suggests that Gleason may have been pleased with his son for doing his part in the alleged killing.

The witness in question told police that Gleason and Garcia had been arguing about alcohol at Gleason’s home on the night of her death, according to an arrest affidavit obtained by KOAA-TV. The same witness reported seeing Gleason later retrieve a gun and say, “I’ll kill her,” before heading outside; the witness said that they then heard a gunshot before Gleason walked back into the home and claimed that he didn’t kill Garcia, the station reports. Gleason’s son later went outside with a .22 caliber firearm and the witness reported hearing more gunshots outside, according to the affidavit. At that point, Gleason remarked that his son had “just earned his man card,” the witness reportedly told police.

A motive for the killing has yet to be officially announced, but according to the affidavit, the witness claimed that, prior to Garcia’s death, she and Gleason had gone to her home to get more alcohol before going back to Gleason’s house, Denver’s 9News reports. After Gleason and Garcia went inside Garcia’s house for the drinks and came back out, “Their attitudes had changed,” the witness reportedly claimed.

It was an unidentified person who first alerted authorities to the burned-out car, local news station KKTV reports. When deputies arrived at the scene at around 1 a.m. on Dec. 20, they found multiple bullet holes in the driver’s side door of the car, further supporting the reporting party’s claim that Gleason had shot at Garcia while she was in the car, the outlet reports.

Authorities reportedly identified Gleason and his son as suspects and traced Gleason’s phone, finding that he was headed south, per KKTV's report. At some point during the day, Gleason called a police dispatcher in Colorado in an attempt to get an update on the murder investigation, but later revealed his location to the person on the line, according to the outlet. Gleason and his son were arrested 10 hours later at a McDonald’s in Santa Fe, New Mexico, the station reports.

Gleason and his son are both facing first-degree murder charges, with Gleason currently in custody at the Santa Fe jail while his son is being held in a youth detention center, KOAA reports.

Though some outlets have reported that Gleason and Garcia were romantically involved, the nature of their relationship is not explicitly stated in the affidavit, according to the Albuquerque Journal.

[Photo: Santa Fe County Sheriff’s Office]