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Man accused of trying to kill mother

A man tried to drown his 77-year-old mother in a bathtub and used a buzzing electronic device to injure her because he wanted his inheritance, police said.

James Craig Finnegan, 50, was being held without bail early Friday at the Hillsborough County jail, awaiting transfer to Palm Beach County. Finnegan was charged with attempted murder and aggravated assault and battery on a person 65 years old or older, a police report said.

It was not clear how Hillsborough County sheriff's deputies were able to catch Finnegan.

Jewel Finnegan told police that on Dec. 18, her son insisted she bathe in a tub he said was filled with bubble bath, which she found strange because she normally took showers, investigators said. When told the water was not bubbling, she bent down and he then tried to push her in, the report said.

She told police that as she held herself against the doors of the tub, she felt a burning sensation on her back and heard a buzzing sound. She screamed, and after he walked out of the bathroom, she asked him if he wanted to kill her, the report said.

When she went back to the bathroom, he followed her and zapped her all over her body with the device, police said. He also pulled out a handgun, put it in her hand and asked her to kill him; she refused, the report said.

He left the apartment, saying he was going to go to the beach to kill himself, police said.

Jewel Finnegan said her son, who is unemployed, wanted to kill her to collect his inheritance.