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Father given 5-year term for son's death

A Floral City man was sentenced to five years in prison Tuesday for fatally stabbing his 36-year-old son in October.

Herbert "Hub" Pearson, 62, of 12401 S Hoyer Ter., showed no emotion as Circuit Judge John Thurman sentenced him to five years in prison and 10 years probation for manslaughter in the death of his son, David Pearson.

The two men were partners in a tree stump removal business and lived in adjacent homes on the same property. Family members said the two had been drinking when the man stabbed his son.

"My client didn't even realize the injury was bad enough that (the son) would die," said attorney Chip Harp Jr. of Brooksville.

After the stabbing, Herbert Pearson left the house. His wife, Doris Pearson, saw David bleeding and took him to Citrus Memorial Hospital in her car. He died a short time later at the Inverness hospital.

Fred Quandt, a nephew of David Pearson, told detectives that after David died, he went searching for Herbert Pearson and found him in the parking lot of ABC Lounge on State Road 44 at County Road 581 in Inverness.

Quandt told investigators that Pearson said he and David began fighting, and David was hitting him. Pearson said he told David that if he hit him again, he would stab him. After talking to Quandt, Pearson bought a bottle of liquor from the store and said he was heading north.

On Tuesday, David Pearson's wife, Sandra Pearson, told Thurman that the death has affected her and her daughter mentally, physically and financially.

"My little girl wakes up crying for her daddy," she said. "She was very close to her daddy, and this will affect her life in the future. This incident will not go away.

"My husband and me had problems because of that family. The violence and abuse was perpetuated from that family to mine. We were trying to cut away and move to another city, but he was killed."

In other court action Tuesday, Thurman sentenced Gary Wayne Moore, of Quitman, Ga., to 25 years in prison for murdering his wife, Clare Elizabeth Moore, a 33-year-old woman whose body was found five years ago along Ozello Trail.

Moore killed his wife in Citrus County, then killed his wife's brother in Georgia. The 25-year sentence will run concurrently with the 20-year sentence he received in Georgia.