Carlisle man charged in killing of his 85-year-old mother

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Carlisle police are investigating the homicide of an 85-year-old woman in the borough. One of the suspects arrested is her son, Paul Tolbert, 54, the other is his live-in girlfriend, Alison Green, 49.

Officers found Mary Tolbert, 85, with several stab wounds inside a bedroom in her home at 35 Carlisle Springs Road.

“This was a brutal, violent killing, senseless and unnecessary,” said Cumberland County District Attorney David Freed. “This is something that none of us wants to see, ever. More so, around this time of year.”

An acquaintance of Tolbert’s called 9-1-1 hours after he said Tolbert told him he was planning to harm his mother. Police immediately rushed to the woman’s apartment, but it was too late.

“In a perfect world, that person would have called earlier,” Freed said. “It was helpful, not in terms of saving a life, but in terms of apprehending who we believe is the killer.”

Officers found Tolbert and Green inside the apartment with a mop, bucket and cleaning supplies, trying to clean up the scene. Police said the pair also tried to move the body.

Freed said the motive was robbery to fuel Tolbert’s crack-cocaine addiction.

“It was not a large amount of money, but in terms of purchasing street level drugs, it was plenty,” he said.

Tolbert had little to say when asked by a reporter is there was anything he wanted to say to his family.

“I don’t think they want to hear anything from me,” he said.

“Are you sorry for what happened to your mother?” asked a reporter. “Yeah,” Tolbert said. “Was she a good mother?” the reporter asked. “Yes, she was,” he replied.

Tolbert and Green are charged with homicide, robbery, tampering with evidence, and abuse of a corpse, along with other offenses. They are both being held inside the Cumberland County Prison.