JOLIET, Ill. (WLS) -- A Joliet nursing home resident has been charged with murdering another resident during a fight over a washing machine Friday, police said.
Officers responded to the Salem Village Nursing and Rehabilitation at 1314 Rowell Ave. at about 9:25 p.m. and found an unresponsive 61-year-old man in a laundry room. Despite lifesaving efforts, the victim was pronounced dead at the scene, police said.
Police said William Paschall, 71, attacked the victim after becoming angry over the victim's use of a washing machine.
A staff member attempted to intervene, and police said Paschall punched the victim in the head and hit the victim with his own walker.
Staff called 911, and Paschall was taken into custody, police said.
Paschall has been charged with first-degree murder and aggravated battery to a person 60 years of age or older.
He's being held at the Will County Jail after making his first appearance in front of a judge Sunday morning.
"The nursing home called. They had called my mom and said he had gotten into an altercation and that he fell and hit his head," said Kayla Martinez, the victim's niece.
The nursing home did not tell the victim's sister that Michael, whose last name the family is withholding for now, was violently attacked.
The family learned the details of the incident in Sunday morning's news reports.
"We were hit with his death, and we were hit with how he died. It hurts. It's a very senseless act," Martinez said.
The details, she said, have just exacerbated their grief, and opened up even more questions about what happened.
"I want to know why? Why wasn't the fight stopped?" Martinez said. "They told us there was a male supervisor that couldn't break up the fight because they were quote unquote 'two really big guys.' They didn't do their part. My uncle was the kindest person you could meet. He would give you the shirt off his back even if he didn't have one."
Salem Village Nursing and Rehabilitation did not immediately comment on the incident.