A 15-year-old boy murdered his mother after an argument over bad grades, then staged her disappearance by recruiting two friends to help bury the body, and make the home look like it had been burglarized, according to deputies in Volusia County, Florida.
WKMG reported that authorities sensed something was amiss and interviewed Ramos' two 17-year-old friends, Dylan Ceglarek and Brian Porras, who reportedly admitted to helping Ramos stage the burglary and bury Cleavenger's body. The friends, both juveniles, are also in custody and facing multiple criminal charges.
Chitwood said the teen left school early on Friday to stage a burglary at the home where he killed his mother, police said.
Chitwood said that Ramos tried to justify his actions as "preemptive self-defense", and was convinced that "he had to kill [Gail] before she killed him".
At River City Church, the teen buried his mother's body beneath a fire pit, according to police.
They are said to have argued over a grade Ramos received at a study program he was participating in, with the teen going to his room at the family's home in Daytona Beach, Florida, afterwards. His father was out of town at the time, police said.
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Fox News reported that Cleavenger was furious at the boy, identified as Gregory Ramos, for getting a D in one of his subjects, according to Chitwood.
Police responded to reports of the burglary at the home on Friday afternoon. He also reportedly said that his mom was missing.
Investigators spent hours talking with the son, Chitwood said at the Saturday press conference. "By all accounts she was an incredible human being", Chitwood said. Around midnight, it's alleged that he came out of his room, went into his mother's room and strangled her.
"To watch how cold and callous and calculating he was, I think was probably the most shocking thing for all of us", Chitwood said. "All our hearts break for this family", Chitwood tweeted on Saturday.
But deputies who arrived at the scene were suspicious of Ramos' demeanor and allegedly got him to confess to the crime during an interrogation.