Valdosta woman stabbed, tazed, beaten by son speaks out -, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Valdosta woman stabbed, tazed, beaten by son speaks out


A Valdosta woman who says her son stabbed, beat, and tazed her Thursday morning is speaking out only to WALB.

She believes her son, who is a Navy veteran, suffers from PTSD after deploying multiple times overseas.

Diane Harding says her 26-year-old son Dexter has always been known as a mama's boy. The former Valdosta Wildcat football player, who joined the Navy at 18, is now behind bars accused of stabbing and tazing his mother yesterday morning. Diane says she's in disbelief.

"He beat me and then he grabbed a knife and I said 'son' and he said 'shut up, shut up.' I don't know, it was like he was fighting for his life or something," said Diane.

She says it was a regular morning; her son woke up, said good morning, went to the bathroom, came out and began tazing and beating her, then he stabbed her in the neck.

"He never said why he was doing this, he just didn't know who I was. I told him, I said 'Son I have some money.' He said, 'You have some money?' It kind of threw him when I said that. He said 'Go get it' and I said, 'I can't get up' so he tazed me and told me to get up," said Diane.

She was able to escape and run to her neighbors house. Her son was found and arrested shortly later.

Diane says three years ago Harding worked on the USS Ronald Reagan and was deployed all over the world. Since moving back to Valdosta he's been very depressed and isolated. "It looked like he couldn't go on after he got out of the military."

Harding's sister Ellith Williams says he started distancing himself from the family a few months ago. "We were just attributing it to not being able to find a job, or get back on your feet, that's what we thought the stand-offish was about."

They say Harding recently began going to the VA Clinic in Valdosta more frequently. They believe he is suffering from PTSD but he wouldn't talk about his personal issues.

Diane says she wishes she would have gotten him help sooner. "I never stopped loving him, even when he was doing that I know it was out of character for him to do that, and I would like to get him help."

Diane says she's already forgiven her son.

Valdosta Police could not comment on Harding's experience in the military. He's charged with aggravated assault and remains in the Lowndes County Jail.

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