DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- The last place anyone perhaps might have thought a man wanted for questioning by New Smyrna Beach police in the bludgeoning death of his grandmother would re-surface within the next 48 hours would be the FBI in Daytona Beach. But that's exactly what Patrick Campbell did Thursday morning just before high noon.
"At approximately 11:35 a.m., the FBI contacted New Smyrna Beach Police to advise Patrick Campbell was currently at 444 Seabreeze Ave. wishing to speak to a Federal Agent in reference to a murder. Daytona Beach Police, New Smyrna Beach Police and the State Attorney’s Office Homicide Investigative Unit responded to the scene and made contact with Mr. Campbell," New Smyrna Beach spokesman Sgt. Shane Riggle told Headline Surfer®.
Riggle continued, "Mr. Campbell subsequently confessed to the murder of Darlene Robertson. Daytona Beach Police arrested Mr. Campbell for grand theft in reference to the victim’s 2006 Nissan Altima. The New Smyrna Beach Police Investigative Division charged Mr. Campbell with the murder of Darlene Robertson. Darlene’s car was recovered and towed to the Volusia County Sheriff’s Office Evidence compound."
Campbell actually drove his deceased mother's car to the FBI in Daytona, some 30 miles from her New Smyrna beachside home. He first stopped in at the law office of Catherine Drees, who has previously represented him on unrelated matters, and then turned himself in to the FBI, located on an upper floor in the same building.
The murder of Campbell's grandmother was especially heinous.
The 64-year-old victim suffered "blunt trauma-type wounds to the head and cuts or stab wounds to the midsection," according to the New Smyrna Beach cops, who did not indicate whether a weapon was used in the bludgeoning or if her assailant used his fists or stomped on her head with his feet.
She was found dead by her son 10:24 a.m. Wednesday morning when he drove to her house when she failed to show up for work at Watson Realty and was asked by her concerned co-workers to see i she was OK.
Cops have not released information when the victim was killed, but it was sometime during the overnight hours or into early morning when her body was discovered in the home.
So why would Campbell show up, of all places, the FBI's branch office in Daytona, when he knew he was wanted by New Smyrna Beach police as a person of interest?
Well, he first showed up at 444 Seabreeze Avenue and the sixth floor of private attorney Catherine Drees' office and told her in not-so-many words that he was in trouble and needed help, but wanted no part of the cops or state prosecutors.
"To him everything is like a conspiracy and that'd the way he has been thinking for years with minor cases I represented him on where he was off his meds and he's probably been off them now," Drees said. "He has a history of psychiatric issues, including schizophrenia. I knew he was a person of interest, but he didn't give me any details. I suggested he might want to talk to the FBI since they're in the same building. And he did."
"To him everything is like a conspiracy and that'd the way he has been thinking for years with minor cases I represented him on where he was off his meds and he's probably been off them now," attorney Catherine Drees said of Patrick Campbell, charged with first-degree murder in the bludgeoning an stabbing of his 64-year-old grandmother, Darlene Robertson.
"He has a history of psychiatric issues, including schizophrenia. I knew he was a person of interest, but he didn't give me any details. I suggested he might want to talk to the FBI since they're in the same building. And he did."
Drees' office is on the sixth floor and the FBI office is on the third floor.
As to whether Campbell planned this to set up some kind of insanity defense, Drees responded, "It wasn't like that at all."
She said the FBI sent two special agents to her office to escort Campbell back to their office.
Campbell's prior brushes with the law have been four prior arrests by NSBPD, the oldest dating back to March of 2011 on a failure to appear charge, and the other three in 2012, included reckless driving, DUI and possession of a small amount of pot.