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By Cari Hachmann 

A 34-year old Laguna Beach man was charged with killing his mother inside their home, according to Melanie Eustice, chief of administration and public affairs for the Orange County District Attorney’s Office.

Orange County Sheriff’s deputies apprehended Matthew Bryson McDonald when they stopped his car in San Clemente around noon on Sunday, Aug. 18, less than two hours after police had found his mother’s body inside the Laguna Beach mobile home they shared.

McDonald was detained and brought back to Laguna Beach Police Department for questioning, said Sgt. Jim Cota, public information officer at Laguna Beach Police Department.

McDonald has been charged with one felony count of murder with an enhancement for personal use of a knife, according to authorities.

Laguna Beach police officers were dispatched to a home at Laguna Terrace Park Community at 10:45 a.m. on Sunday, Aug. 18 after a report of a death at the mobile home park located at 30802 Coast Highway, according to Laguna Beach Chief of Police Laura Farinella.

When officers arrived, neighbors told police they had heard an argument and screaming coming from a nearby residence.

Authorities said the body of 61-year-old Megan Estes Hampton was discovered by a close friend, who had stopped by the woman’s home to pick her up for church.

Police were given a description of McDonald before broadcasting details to all Orange County law enforcement agencies.

McDonald, who police said has no prior criminal history, faces a maximum sentence of life in prison if convicted on all charges. He is currently being held at the Orange County Jail on $1 million bail. Senior Deputy District Attorney Eric Scarbrough is prosecuting the case.

No motive for the crime has been released to the public.

“The Orange County District Attorney’s Office extends its deepest sympathies to the loved ones of Megan Hampton,” said Todd Spitzer, Orange County district attorney.

Matthew Bryson McDonald. Photo: Courtesy of LBPD
Matthew Bryson McDonald.
Photo: Courtesy of LBPD

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