Boy, 11, Kills Girl, 8, In Shooting Over Puppies

A boy, 11, killed a girl, 8, in shooting over puppies outside of her Tennessee home. MayKayla Dyer told the unidentified minor boy, who had allegedly bullied her since she had moved to the White Pines area of Jefferson County, that he could not hold her new puppy. The 11-year-old boy went inside his home, grabbed his father’s shotgun, and fired a shell into the 8-year-old girl’s chest from inside his home.

The 8-year-old girl was shot and killed on Saturday evening around 7:30 p.m. Maykayla Dyer went to the same elementary school as her killer, USA Today reports. Sheriff G.W “Bud” McCoig said the boy, 11, shot the girl in the chest with a 12-gauge shotgun, WRIB reports. McCoig’s deputies found an unresponsive Dyer on the ground outside her home.

“We lost an 8-year-old child, and our department is hurting,” Sheriff McCoig said. He also noted that the community will get through the tragedy “by the grace of God.”

The 8-year-old girl was pronounced dead upon arrival at Morristown-Hamblen Hospital, the New York Daily News reports. According to accounts from neighbors, the third grade girl would not let the boy play with her puppy when he asked, and the boy walked away angry just prior to the murder.

“Wanting to see a puppy, the little girl laughed and told him no and that was it,” neighbor Chasity Arwood said.

The 11-year-old Jefferson County boy has not been charged with first-degree murder in juvenile court. A local judge declined to charge the accused killer as an adult. A transfer to adult court could be made at a later date. The young man is currently being held at a juvenile detention center awaiting trial.

Latasha Dyer, the victim’s mother, had this to say about her daughter and the murder when discussing the tragic shooting with local reporters.

“When we first moved to White Pine, the little boy was bullying Maykayla. He was making fun of her, calling her names, just being mean to her. I had to go the principal about him and he quit for a while, and then all of a sudden yesterday he shot her. She was a precious little girl, she was a mommy’s girl, no matter how bad of a mood you were in she could always make you smile. I want her back in my arms, this is not fair, hold and kiss your babies every night because you’re never promised the next.”

The 11-year-old boy’s five siblings were also inside the home at the time of the shooting. The White Pines family is now under investigation by the Department of Children’s Services.

White Pines Elementary School Principal Bill Walker addressed the shooting of during a press conference held earlier this week.

“White Pine community has experienced a tragedy, with a shooting death of a student. The staff of White Pine School and Jefferson County Schools are saddened by this incident, but want to assure parents and community that counselors are on site to assist students and staff.”

The funeral for the 8-year-old girl will be held on Thursday at the Cooke-Campbell Mortuary in Maynardville. Interment will take place at the Haun Cemetery in Luttrell, Tennessee. The family asked for donations to help cover funeral expenses in lieu of flowers.

“Our precious daughter went to her Heavenly home Saturday, October 3, 2015,” Maykayla Dyer’s obituary reads. “MaKayla leaves behind a brother, three sisters, her parents, numerous grandparents and great-grandparents.”

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