Son arrested in woman's fatal knifing
By T.J. PIGNATARO
News Staff Reporter
An argument that exploded Thursday morning ended in
the death of an Amherst woman who was stabbed by her 28-year-old son,
police said. The body of Elli Perkins, 54, was discovered on a bedroom
floor of her home in the 1400 block of Hopkins Road about 10:30 a.m.,
Amherst Police Chief John J. Moslow said. She had been stabbed several
times in the chest, police said. An autopsy is being conducted.
Jeremy M. Perkins was arraigned late Thursday
before Amherst Town Justice Geoffrey K. Klein on second-degree murder
and weapons possession charges. A not guilty plea was entered, and
Perkins was ordered to submit to a psychiatric evaluation today.
Police were summoned by an acquaintance of the victim, who
entered the house after she became concerned "something was not
right," Moslow said. Jeremy Perkins was also in the house, submitted
to questioning and was charged with the slaying, Moslow said. The
victim's husband, Donald E. Perkins, was at work at the time of the
slaying. Jeremy Perkins was convicted in 1994 of driving while
impaired, in the Town of Clarence.
Glenn Gramigna of Buffalo, who said he is a close
friend of the family, said Jeremy Perkins developed schizophrenia in
the last year. "He began hearing voices and talking to people who
weren't there, taking long walks. There hadn't been any indication he
had ever been violent," Gramigna said. His parents had been helping
their son cope with the disease through nutrition, vitamins and
medical treatment, he said. "Just to think that someone who was such
a gentle, loving person would meet such a horrible end is just
devastating," Gramigna said. Police remained at the Hopkins Road crime
scene through the afternoon. Yellow tape surrounded the perimeter of
the century-old house.
Mrs. Perkins, originally from the Rochester area,
and her husband of about 30 years operate Glass Art, a glass-painting
business. According to the firm's Web site, Mrs. Perkins attended art
school at Rochester Institute of Technology. Donald Perkins, a
contractor, is a cabinetmaker and carpenter.
The Perkinses also have a married daughter,