RIVERVIEW (FOX 13) - Josh Hofer has never talked publicly about what he heard on March 20, 2017.
"'I killed my mom.' Like that. That's exactly how he told me, twice," Hofer said, recalling the four words his best friend spoke that day.
Life as he knew it was turned upside down after his best friend, Josh Carmona became the main subject of a murder investigation. Detectives say Carmona killed his mother, Tara D'Angelo, on her 39th birthday, and then went on with his day.
"I couldn't believe it. I couldn't believe it," Hofer repeated.
Records show Carmona picked up his little sister from daycare and then called Hofer for a game of baseball.
"I said, 'When do you want to meet?' and he said, 'As soon as possible,'" Hofer remembers.
Hofer says they met at a Brandon Park and watched Carmona's little sister play on a swing. Then they started throwing around a baseball.
"You're playing, you're having fun, you're laughing," Hofer said.
But after a few minutes, the laughing stopped and Carmona asked Hofer if he would do him a favor and take his little sister home.
"He told me that he had done something and he needs to run and I asked him what he's talking about," said Hofer.
Hofer, who aspires to be a police officer, kept pressing Carmona.
"'Look, Josh, you running like this, you know what career goals I have for my future after this. I can't talk to you anymore. You know it's not good for myself and then he said, 'I understand,'" Hofer said. "Then he kinda gave me a goodbye hug, he backs up and told me he killed his mom and I kinda looked at him and I said, 'You did what?' and he was like, 'I killed my mom,' and I was like, 'Hold up, hold up, Josh,' and I was kinda frozen. I didn't know what to say and then he just turned around got in the car and left."
Stunned and confused, Hofer knew he had to get Carmona's little sister home safe. But that home had become a crime scene. Hofer ran into Carmona's grandfather, who had discovered the body.
"His grandpa, which had blood on his arms, he came up to me and said, 'I think he killed his mom,' and I said, 'Really?' and he said, 'Yes,' and I said, 'He told me he did that before he left,'" Hofer recalled.
Four months later, Hofer is doing better but that day still haunts him.
"It was hard. I was sad and very angry. At the same time, I wanted to hate Josh for what he had done I started thinking about his little sister, how she's going to have to grow up without a brother and her mother. I mean, it was just tough," Hofer said.