MOBILE COUNTY, Ala. (WKRG) — A mother’s grief is compounded after the recent release of the man accused of killing her son. In early March, 36-year-old Erik Perez was accused of killing a man in a Mobile County home with a hatchet and shovel. Perez was released on a $190,000 bond this week.
The victim’s mother reached out to us after Perez’s release. The victim, 53-year-old Clinton Phillips, was known as “Buster” to his friends. His mother says “Buster” had troubles with drugs but finished rehab months ago, turned his life to Jesus, then married just a week before he was killed in a home off Jeff Hamilton Road in West Mobile County.
“He was the best he was such a good person, in heart he was such a good person,” said Buster’s mother Sharon Phillips. The victim’s mother says one of the hardest parts of this is still not knowing why this crime happened.
“It really shocks me I mean he called me every night and the night I was expecting a call he didn’t, I planned on calling him the next morning but instead I got the call [from authorities],” said Sharon Phillips. “I went all to pieces, like any mother would that loves their children.” Phillips said she was very concerned when she heard about Perez’s release.
“I was never so devastated in my life,” said Phillips. Phillips says her son grew up in Stapleton in Baldwin County and was staying in the home in Mobile County to flip it.
“I want justice, I don’t want to see him go free from what he’s done,” said Phillips. Perez’s case has been sent to a Mobile County Grand Jury. No trial date has been set at this time.
Last March, Perez’s attorney Jason Darley said his client is an Army Veteran who has mental health issues following a serious injury while serving in South Korea. Darley said they’re trying to get Perez into a treatment facility, possibly with the VA. A spokesperson with the DA’s office said they requested a higher bond and electronic monitoring for Perez but was denied.