Grandmother allegedly beaten by grandson fighting for life in Huntsville Hospital ICU

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) — A grandmother is spending her 80th birthday fighting for her life in the Huntsville Hospital Intensive Care Unit. The events that transpired Sunday afternoon that put her there are highly disturbing.

Family members say Florence Guthrie was beaten for a few hours within inches of her life by her grandson, John Seals Jr.

Guthrie lives in Huntsville with her grandson.

“Very sweet lady," said Guthrie’s neighbor and friend, John Leeman. “She and my wife were good friends.”

Leeman has lived beside Guthrie for the last four years. Sunday afternoon, he received a concerning call from Guthrie’s granddaughter with an urgent request.

"She asked me to check on Ms. Florence, I said 'OK,'" shared Leeman. "I went to the back door, then banged on her window and remembered I had a key. I opened the front door. There she was, laying there, blood all over the floor. You couldn't recognize her. She had a blanket and said, 'I'm cold, I'm cold.' And the grandson was sitting on the couch."

*Warning - the second image in this gallery is extremely graphic and disturbing.

Leeman immediately contacted the Huntsville Police Department. Huntsville police arrested and booked grandson, John Seals Jr. into the Madison County Jail. Seals is charged with first degree assault. His mug shot is telling of the horror of the evening.

Family reports Seals has suffered from Huntington’s disease since 2007 and in that time his mental health has declined.

"Police have been called five to six times over here because of her grandson," explained Leeman.

Ms. Guthrie has been in the ICU since Sunday and family reports things are looking up.

"I’m just hoping she will come out of this and be strong," said Leeman.

Seals is currently in the Madison County Jail with no bond.

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