(CN) - A Florida mother claims in court that her ex-her husband's refusal to safely store the many guns he kept in this home was the proximate cause of their son's suicide.
In a wrongful death suit filed in Volusia County, Fla., Christina Schroeder claims the relationship between her ex-husband, Christian Schroeder, and their son, Garrett was strained for almost as long as she can remembered.
"Garrett, from the age of four until the date of his death, was constantly and continually verbally, emotionally, and physically abused by his father, Christian, destroying Garrett's sense of self worth, causing him to be depressed, distraught, and caused damage o his mental psyche," the complaint says.
But matters took a tragic turn this past summer, when Christian Schroeder suddenly cut his son off financially, claiming he did not believe the young man was his son and demanding a paternity test.
At the time, Garrett Schroeder was attending Florida State University but the loss of his father's support, caused him to move back to his hometown of Ormond Beach, Fla.
"Garrett was homeless, living in his car with no money for food or gas," the complaint says.
Fearing that her son had fallen into a terminal depression, Christina Schroeder says she telephoned and emailed her ex-husband, begging him to remove his stash of guns from his home.
"He said he would, but he did not," the complaint says.
Ultimately, Garrett Schroeder used one of those guns to kill himself, he mother says.
Christina Schroeder seeks unspecified damages. She is represented by Jerry Wells of Daytona Beach, Fla.
Attempts to reach Christian Schroeder were unsuccessful.