Son accused of shoving 78-year-old father off cliff in west Austin

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AUSTIN (KXAN) — A son is accused of luring his father to a cliff in west Austin and pushing him off. The 78-year-old man fell about 40 feet, and had potentially serious injuries, according to Austin-Travis County EMS.

According to an affidavit, on Sunday Gerald McCants, 49, left his house and returned a short while later, excitedly telling his 78-year-old father to “come with him to look at a rattle snake he found.”

They drove to the 5300 block of Highland Crest Drive, in the Ridge Oak Park neighborhood west of MoPac Expressway. They got out and police say McCants “lured [the victim] a few yards off the road near a cliff saying that the rattle snake was over there.”

Gerald McCants (APD)

Police say McCants then pushed his father, who fell through dense brush and undergrowth and landed about 40 feet down. Austin Travis County EMS estimated Sunday it was closer to 50 feet.

“As he was falling down the bluff [the victim] stated that he could hear Gerald laughing,” the affidavit wrote.

ATC EMS responded to the call at 9:04 a.m.

Medics initially said the patient suffered only minor injuries. However, a following update said the patient was declared trauma alert and was taken to Dell Seton Medical Center with potentially serious injuries.

McCants faces an Injury to an Elderly person charge, which is a third-degree felony. He is currently in custody in the Travis County Jail.

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