12-Year-Old Tennessee Boy Shoots Father Dead While Protecting His Mother From Domestic Violence

A young Tennessee boy has shot his father dead while defending his mother during a domestic violence incident.

The 12-year-old, whose name has not been released, killed his 56-year-old dad Kevron Thomas "Tommy" Durham by shooting him in the chest with a rifle twice. Morgan County Sheriff's Office and the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation both responded to calls from a neighbour.

According to NBC 10 News, interviews and evidence suggest Durham was having a domestic dispute with his wife and that the boy intervened. District Attorney General Russell Johnson said there have been at least five cases of domestic violence at the home.

"It appears that this is going to be a situation of the juvenile coming to the defense of his mother who was a victim in this and the other incidents of domestic violence." Johnson said, according to NBC.

"We are still looking at what we can do through juvenile court with the suspect. Our greatest concern at this point is that child's well-being going forward in dealing with what has transpired, so we are leaving all of our options open in that respect.

"We feel like this juvenile suspect needs counselling and services that could be provided in juvenile court, if he were charged in juvenile court," Johnson said, according to Knox News. "But if he were an adult, we wouldn't charge him—it's defense of a third party."

No charges have been laid on the boy yet. "A lot of times in a domestic violence situation, the children grow up in that environment, and they get to a point where they just can't take it anymore," Morgan County Sheriff's Office Captain Mike Wren said. "One of the things we need to do is catch these sorts of things before they happen."

Earlier this month in Pennsylvania, a 59-year man was killed by his adult son after the pair fought over a "small amount of money." According to local authorities, as reported by CBS Local, Robert Coult III admitted to killing his father Robert Coult Jr. and burying his body on a roadside in Gladwyne. Delaware County District Attorney Katayoun Copeland said Coult III tried and failed to dismember his father.

"He put a fresh T-shirt on him, literally seat-belted him in and drove him to the location where he ultimately discarded him," Copeland said. The son allegedly killed his father with a hammer and a kitchen knife.