The father a 19-year-old fatally shot on Saturday by a Harford County Sheriff's Office deputy said Monday that based on what police and others have described about his son's actions in the hour or so before the shooting, "there's no doubt" he had taken some substance that altered his personality.
"That wasn't my son," Glenn Beckman said.
Beckman said Seth Jacob Beckman had been treated for depression and had been taking medication. But he also said he had speculated about his son possibly using synthetic drugs that are sold legally.
"I know he was under the influence of some kind of bad drug," he said, though he did not specify.
Investigators also are trying to determine if Mr. Beckman may have been under the influence of, a sheriff's office spokesman said.
"I cannot confirm at this time if Mr. Beckman was under the influence of drugs or alcohol," Edward Hopkins said. "However, his behavior, as described by witnesses and as seen on surveillance video, clearly shows that he was acting irrationally and erratically and something was causing him to act in this manner."
Police are hoping the toxicology report from the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner will help to determine if alcohol or drugs played a role in affecting his behavior,' Hopkins said.
The gas station lot that had been filled with police officers and patrol cars Saturday night – and well into the early morning hours Sunday, had a strikingly different appearance Sunday afternoon, as people purchased gas, snacks and even snowball treats.
"We're back and running," said Ed Castronova, who, with his wife, Sharon, owns the Sharon's Shaved Ice stand on the lot of the BP station lot at the intersection of Red Pump Road and Route 24 in the area just north of Bel Air known as Rock Spring.
"I didn't want to leave the place shut down," Castronova said. "I want to get right back up and running again."
Fewer than 20 hours earlier, at 10:44 p.m. Saturday, Mr. Beckman was shot to death just outside the small building that houses Sharon's Shaved Ice.
Mr. Beckman, who lived in the nearby community of Brentwood Park, was confronted by the deputy after Mr. Beckman, who police said had been seen acting disorderly and hostile at several nearby businesses the same night, allegedly broke into the snowball stand, which was closed.
As details of the shooting remained murky Monday, a small memorial consisting of a few roses placed inside what appeared to be a snare drum, was placed in the grass a few yards from the snowball stand.
"[My son] wouldn't hurt anybody, except in the sports arena and that was controlled, and he would pick you up after he knocked you down," Glenn Beckman said.
Beckman said his son was only aggressive on the athletic field, would befriend other youths who were being bullied and was "actually a very good kid, very compliant to authority."
Beckman said Seth had been treated for depression and was taking a medication injected monthly, and the most recent treatment was Thursday.
He was unsure, however, if some unknown substance that he suspected his son of taking Saturday night caused the personality change, or whether it was the result of combining the substance with his regular medication.
Deputy David Feeney, the 43-year-old deputy who shot Mr. Beckman, has been a sworn officer since June 2012 after working as a correctional officer at the Harford County Detention Center since January 2011, according to Hopkins. He is assigned to the Northern Precinct in Jarrettsville.
Feeney has been placed on administrative leave pending the investigation, in accordance with the agency's protocols in such circumstances. The Sheriff's Office is the principal law enforcement agency for the county, which has about 245,000 residents.
Hopkins could not say Monday if Mr. Beckman carried any kind of weapon or how many shots Feeney fired. He did say, however, the Sheriff's Office has obtained video surveillance from an area business showing Mr. Beckman was "acting irrationally."