In a heart-wrenching tale, John Shively bestowed his last two dollars upon his son, but the subsequent dispute over an additional 25 cents led to a tragic outcome, with the father firing a fatal shot at close range, directly into the heart of young Zachary Shively.
This heartrending incident was related to the authorities by John Shively himself, as detailed in a criminal complaint filed in Dane Co. The 64-year-old stands accused of first-degree homicide, stemming from the unfortunate shooting incident that occurred on Madison’s south side over the weekend.
The victim was identified as 25-year-old Zachary Shively, who was confirmed to be the elder Shively’s son, as stated by the Madison Police Department on Monday.
Facing the court in Dane Co., Shively’s bond was set at $300,000 by the court commissioner, and a preliminary hearing was scheduled for August 1.
The lifeless body of Zachary Shively was discovered around 6:30 p.m. on Saturday, when officers arrived at a residence in the 2800 block of Warner St., as previously reported by the MPD.
According to the criminal complaint, John Shively immediately called 911 and openly admitted to shooting his own son. Upon arriving at the scene, the MPD officers found John Shively with bloodstained hands and clothes, confirming the unfortunate fate of his son.
When questioned about how the gun was discharged, Shively allegedly took responsibility, stating, “I pulled the trigger.” He further informed both the 911 dispatchers and the officers that he had placed the gun down, only for it to be later discovered on the bedroom floor, its barrel still pointing in the direction of Zachary Shively.
During an interview with an MPD detective, Shively claimed that the shooting occurred following repeated demands for money from his son, which escalated with physical altercation, including pushing and punching. Shively attributed his son’s violent behavior to alcohol consumption, asserting that he had consumed drinks at a Madison bar earlier that day.
The complaint detailed Shively’s explanation that his son had sought $2.50, and in response, he had given him his last two dollars. Left with a mere 30 to 40 cents, as he recounted, Shively inadvertently dropped the small change in front of his son. The young man, however, remained insistent on receiving an additional 25 cents, insisting on having $2.50.
Shively further revealed that he had made poor financial decisions, resulting in maxed-out credit cards. When questioned about this, he claimed to have been writing post-dated checks to his son’s friends.
Another resident of the household corroborated the account, stating that he overheard the argument, primarily concerning money. He tried to persuade Zachary Shively to leave by assuring him that he had the required funds, and they should depart. As he attempted to leave, he reportedly heard the fatal gunshot and subsequently heard John Shively instruct him to call 911.