A 17-year-old Indian-American son has been arrested in North Carolina in connection with murdering his mother, in a rare incident of matricide which has sent “shock waves” among the area.
Arnav Uppalapati was held by Cary police on Friday following more than a year for the loss of his 51-year-old mother Nalini Tellaprolu who worked at Duke Medical Center.
Tellaprolu was killed on December 17, 2015, with a plastic bag over her head.
Friends of the family were upset when the police charged Uppalapati with her murder.
“It’s devastating. There’s never been an incident where a son has taken the life of his own biological mother.It really sends shock waves,” Satish Garimella, a Morrisville town councilman of Indian descent, was quoted as stating by the local ‘The News&Observer’.
Uppalapati was 16 when he reported came home from school and discovering his mother’s body in the garage with a plastic bag covering her head. Her feet were in the back seat of a car. She may have been beaten before she was strangled, the report said, citing the autopsy report.
Uppalapati was a man of interest in the case from the outset, told Wake County District Attorney Lorrin Freeman.
One revealing clue was early reports that indicated there were no signs of a forced entry into the house two-storey, $450,000 home at the Upchurch Farms subdivision, Freeman told.
“We’re shocked as a community. This was not something we expected to hear. She focussed all of her energy on her kids,” told Padma Tummala, a long-time friend of Tellaprolu.
“I still don’t believe it. This is completely out of the blue,” stated Vijay Javvadi, another family friend.
It wasn’t clear how police finally broke the case or what motive played a role.
Police told in a statement that Uppalapati would be tried on a class B1 felony charge, which is punishable by a maximum sentence of life in prison without parole.
Tellaprolu’s death was ruled a homicide by the Medical Examiner’s Office. Her body was covered with bruises and scratches on her face, neck, torso and arms. There were lesser blunt force injuries, and the cartilage in her neck was fractured, the report stated. — PTI