Published: Aug 11, 2010 3:52 PM EDT
Updated: Aug 11, 2010 12:52 PM EDT

BROOKSVILLE, Fla. (AP) - A Spring Hill man has been sentenced to 25 years in prison for fatally beating his mother with a remote control and holding her underwater in the family pool.

A Hernando County judge gave 59-year-old Kevin Simmons the maximum sentence on Tuesday. He pleaded guilty in June to second-degree murder in order to avoid going to trial for first-degree murder. In that case, he could have faced the death penalty.

Simmons' mother, 81-year-old Dorothy Simmons, was living with Kevin Simmons and his wife in August 2008 when authorities say he went into her bedroom and began hitting her with a telephone and TV remote. He then reportedly dragged her to the backyard to the pool.

Simmons' attorney said her client was in a "psychotic state" on the day he killed his mother.