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Singer's mother describes slaying

By MICHAEL D. HARRIS

LOS ANGELES -- Soul singer Marvin Gaye was going to pack up and leave the family home the day he was shot to death during a heated argument with his father, the entertainer's mother told police.

Alberta Gay's statement was released Wednesday at a hearing before Municipal Court Judge Michael Tynan in which Marvin Gay Sr. was released after posting $30,000 bail.

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The 70-year-old retired minister had been in custody since his arrest on murder charges following the April 1 shooting of the Grammy Award-winning artist. The singer added the 'e' to his name when he began his career.

Mrs. Gay, the only witness to the shooting, is scheduled to be the key prosecution witness at her husband's preliminary hearing scheduled July 16.

Gay, who last week was declared mentally competent to stand trial, has pleaded innocent. He claimed in statements to police and in a published interview that he fired the gun in self-defense and that he thought the weapon was loaded with blanks or BBs.

Mrs. Gay, who recently filed for divorce, told detectives her husband and son began fighting in the singer's bedroom.

'Marvin told him get out and got up from the bed, walked over to my husband and pushed him back,' she said. 'Marvin pushed him a couple of times. My husband turned and walked back to his bedroom.

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'Marvin followed him yelling little cuss words at him. Marvin told his father 'I'll beat you up.' They both went into my husband's bedroom and I followed them. I couldn't see what happened in the bedroom.'

'I heard my husband say 'he's kicking me. I don't have to take that,' Mrs. Gay continued. 'When I entered the room my husband was on the floor and Marvin was standing a short distance away. I took Marvin by the arm and led him back to his room.

'I sat him on the foot of the bed. Marvin told me, 'Mother, I'm going to to get my things and get out of this house. Father hates me and I'm never coming back.' I figured Marvin might have been taking some stuff today, because he was so quick to fly off. Marvin used cocaine at times. When he used it, he would fly off real quick.'

The autopsy found cocaine residue in the body of Gaye.

'He, my husband, was always quick to talk about shooting people. My husband didn't say anything. He just pointed the gun at Marvin. I screamed, but it was very quick. He, my husband, shot and Marvin screamed.

'I tried to run. Marvin slid down to the floor after the first shot. Then my husband fired two more times. I ran out of the house and ran to my (other) son's house next door. I told him to call the cops and the paramedics.'

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While examining Gay, doctors found a brain tumor the size of a walnut, which was removed at County-USC Medical Center May 17. The defense claims the tumor may have caused Gay to lose control and shoot his son.

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