Deputies: Son killed, father injured in murder, attempted suicide

Deputies: Son killed, father injured in murder, attempted suicide

A 16-year-old Madison boy was killed by his father, who then attempted suicide at Token Creek Park Tuesday, according to a release from the Dane County Sheriff’s Office.

Emergency crews responded to a park when a park visitor found two severely injured men on one of the trails at 6:09 p.m.

Deputies said the boy was pronounced dead at the scene.

The boy’s father, Theodore R. Peterson, 47, was flown to UW Hospital with life-threatening injuries. He’s in custody on a tentative charge of homicide, according to the release. Peterson was hospitalized and is listed in critical condition.

Deputies said Peterson and his son arrived at the park in a silver Nissan X-terra.

Officials said they are still looking for a motive, but they did recover weapons at the scene.

“That’s one of the things that our detectives are working on right now,” Dane County Sheriff’s Office spokesperson Elise Schaffer said. “We are doing interviews with family members, friends, people that had contact with Mr. Peterson to try and find out what possibly could have motivated him to do such a horrible act.”

The family lived on a quiet far east side street where neighbors told News 3 the 16-year-old had special needs.

“I was shocked. I thought it was pretty crazy. You wouldn’t expect something like that, just around over here and not only that but your neighbor, next door, that they would do that,” Saleem Kahn said.

Detectives are interested in hearing from anyone who may have seen Peterson and his son or had contact with them between approximately 5 and 6 p.m.  Anyone with information is asked to call the Sheriff’s Office tip line at 608-284-6900 or on the Sheriff’s Office website.

The park was closed about three hours, but as of 9 p.m. Tuesday deputies started letting overnight campers back into the park.