Watch CBS News

Levittown, Pa., man charged with killing and beheading father

Justin Mohn charged with murder for beheading father inside Levittown home
Justin Mohn charged with murder for beheading father inside Levittown home 02:07

LEVITTOWN, Pa. (CBS) -- A man is in custody after police say he killed his father and beheaded him inside a Levittown, Pennsylvania, home.

Court records show 32-year-old Justin Mohn has been charged with first-degree murder and abuse of a corpse.

Police were called by the victim's wife to a home on Upper Orchard Drive in Levittown, part of Middletown Township in Bucks County, around 7 p.m. Tuesday.

Officers found Justin Mohn's father, Michael Mohn, in an upstairs bathroom. Justin Mohn was not there when police arrived. Michael Mohn was found beheaded with his head in a plastic bag with a machete and a large knife nearby, his wife told police. Michael Mohn was a retired civil engineer with the Army Corps of Engineers, sources said. 

Middletown Township Police Chief Joseph Bartorilla said officers investigated at the home and determined the son had left.

Justin Mohn had driven roughly two hours away to Fort Indiantown Gap, a National Guard training facility in Lebanon County. On Tuesday night, he was arrested inside the base, and his father's car was located near a fence along the property.

Angela Watson, communications director for the Pennsylvania Department of Military and Veteran Affairs, told CBS Philadelphia Wednesday afternoon that investigators first pinged Justin Mohn's cell phone near the base around 9 p.m. on Tuesday. Shortly after that, they picked up a signal from his phone inside the base, and arrested him just before 9:30 p.m.

According to Watson, Justin Mohn had a gun on him when he was arrested but details about the type of weapon or any ammunition he might've had have not been released.

Chief Bartorilla said he believes Justin Mohn made threats directed toward federal government officials and employees. It's not clear if those threats were against anyone at Fort Indiantown Gap.

Justin Mohn is in custody at the Middletown Township Police Department.

A criminal complaint described a YouTube video, supposedly recorded by Mohn, where he says he killed his father and made threats to federal employees and confessed to the crime in an antigovernment rant. The video has since been removed from YouTube.

YouTube later responded to CBS News with a statement saying the platform is working to prevent any re-uploads of the video.

One neighbor said her family was up all night after hearing the news. 

"I can't even believe that could happen, but it happened," Judy Dreisbach said. 

Dreisbach said the commotion started Tuesday night about six houses down from her house after Denise Mohn, the wife of Michael, found him dead in the bathtub. 

A relative of Dreisbach's son-in-law lives next door to the crime scene and stepped in to help. She said when he arrived at the home, he found Michael Mohn in the tub decapitated. 

"I can't even believe it," Dreisbach said. "That's what I said to my daughter. How much disrespect do you have for anybody in your family that you would kill them, you know, especially your father."

Mental health resources

This crime is so shocking that the Bucks County National Alliance on Mental Illness offered to help neighbors who are struggling with the news.

"For the folks that are in that neighborhood, open invitation," Associate Executive Director Nicholas Emeigh said. "Our door is open. We're here in Warrington. You're welcome to come and see us. I will come and see you, if you need or if you want, just to talk about this."

Emeigh recommended looking for sudden changes in mood, eating and sleeping. He also recommended taking breaks from consuming information about the crime. 

You can reach the Bucks County Alliance on Mental Illness at (215) 343-3055 from 3 p.m. until 10 p.m. daily. You can also call the Suicide Prevention Hotline at (800) 273-TALK.

CBS Philadelphia has also a list of mental health resources available. 

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.