Sheriff: Joseph Cain Cecil said he stabbed his mother because 'God told me to do it'

CASA GRANDE, AZ - An Arizona man is charged with murder after he allegedly stabbed his mother to death then told detectives God told him to do it.

Joseph Cain Cecil, 38, is also accused of stabbing his aunt at a home just outside Casa Grande, according to the Pinal County Sheriff's Office.

Authorities say they received a call around 5:50 p.m. on Friday about a male attacking and stabbing his mother and aunt with a knife.

When deputies arrived they found a 63-year-old female, later identified as Cecil's aunt, in the front yard with multiple stab wounds.

They also saw a man standing over another man who was lying on the ground covered in blood. The man on the ground, later identified as Cecil, was taken into custody and taken to a local hospital to be treated for injuries he suffered after a neighbor struck him several times with a shovel to try to stop him from stabbing the victims.

When deputies went inside the home they found 65-year-old Ronna Thomas lying on the floor with multiple stab wounds.

Thomas was taken to Casa Grande Regional Medical Center where she died.

Her sister, whose identity was not released, was air-lifted to a Phoenix hospital and is in stable condition, according to authorities.

Sheriff Paul Babeu said that when homicide detectives asked Cecil why he stabbed the victims he told them "God told me to do it."

Cecil was booked into the Pinal County Adult Detention Center for first-degree murder, attempted murder and aggravated assault.

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