Jeffersonville man pleads not guilty to killing father - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Jeffersonville man pleads not guilty to killing father

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Darren Cave made his first court appearance on Oct. 15, 2015 after being charged with killing his father. Darren Cave made his first court appearance on Oct. 15, 2015 after being charged with killing his father.
Earl Cave  (source: family photo) Earl Cave (source: family photo)

JEFFERSONVILLE, Ind. (WDRB) -- The Jeffersonville man accused of killing his father pleaded not guilty in a Clark County courtroom this morning. 

Jeffersonville Police say Darren Cave admitted to beating his 60-year-old father to death and leaving his body on the bathroom floor. The motive for the murder isn't clear.

Cave is being held in the Clark County Jail without bond.

The 33-year-old was escorted into the courtroom by a sheriff's deputy. Cave was wearing orange jail clothes with his hands cuffed as he walked into court, charged with murdering his father. "His father was stomped to death and beat to death where he lived," said Clark County Prosecutor Jeremy Mull.

The suspect has a criminal history that goes back to 1998, but family members also say he has a history of mental illness. Family members were in Clark County Circuit Court supporting him, but did not want to talk to the media. Instead, their pastor spoke for them.

"Mr. Cave, Darren, has had a long history of mental illness and they know this is a tragic circumstance that's happened to Earl," said Jim Moon, pastor.

In court, the judge ordered that Cave's mental competency be evaluated. Depending on the outcome, it could change how the case is handled. "I want to see what the psychologists and psychiatrists say so I'll need to wait on the results of those tests and then decide what the proper way forward is," said Mull.

Darren and his father, shared an apartment together in Jeffersonville. Cave's body was left on the bathroom floor, and was found a week ago. Investigators say a foot print left on Cave linked his son to the murder. He later confessed to police, but prosecutors say it's not clear why Darren killed his father.

With grief and worry on their faces, Prosecutor Jeremy Mull spoke to the family. They are dealing with an unthinkable predicament; one of their loved ones is dead and another is accused of killing him. They are standing by Darren Cave through it all.

"Earl would want them to be here to support and love him through this, and that's what they are planning to do," said Moon.

A not guilty plea was entered for Cave in court. He has no bond which means he will be in jail until the case is resolved.

Cave's criminal history includes battery, armed robbery, theft and public indecency charges.

He's due back in court for a pre-trial conference on Dec. 17. His trial date was set for Feb. 9, 2016.

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