A 13-year-old South Carolina boy opened fire at two house invaders, fatally shooting a would-be robber during an alleged break-in attempt at his Ladson home, according to the police.
The teen, whose name has not been disclosed since he is a minor, saw an armed man walking toward the Elderwood Dr. house on Tuesday afternoon. Alone and having panicked at the prospect of his house being invaded by robbers, the South Carolina boy grabbed his mother’s 9mm Glock 17.
The Charleston County Police have confirmed the identities of the two would-be robbers as Lamar Brown, 31, and and 28-year-old Ira Bennett, and it was the former who tried to break into the house first through the back door. It was at this moment that the South Carolina boy started shooting with the handgun, with Brown having suffered multiple gunshot wounds.
His accomplice Bennett drove him up to the Trident Medical Center and dropped him off there, where he was later pronounced dead. According to ABC News affiliate, Bennett, who hails from North Charleston, then continued on in the vehicle and witnesses later identified him as the driver of the car.
Bennett, who has since been arrested and charged with first degree burglary and possession of a weapon during the commission of a violent crime, has a long crime record, including assault, drug, and other charges, according to the documents released by Charleston County Sheriff’s Office. However, speaking at his bond trial Wednesday, Bennett defended himself and said that he had nothing to with the aforementioned burglary. He pleaded with the magistrate and insisted that his car wasn’t present at the scene of the crime.
“I don’t know what’s going on. I just don’t understand the charges. All I did was take a friend to the hospital,” Bennett reportedly said during a bond hearing, according to Washington Post, “and I ended up here.”
Though more details about how the incident exactly transpired have not been revealed because of the ongoing trial, the South Carolina boy’s mother said she was rendered “speechless” when she first came to know that her son had killed a man. In an interview with Post and Courier, she admitted that she was shocked partly because she had never trained her son to use her handgun.
“I tell my kids that if anything ever happens to call 911, but I also tell them to protect themselves if they have to. I never would have dreamed that this would have been a part of our day today.”
She added that she was at work when the attempted burglary occurred and that her son called her immediately after the shooting, when she told him to call the police. “He is home during the day,” she said, “usually with other family members present, because he attends an online public school.”
As for the South Carolina boy, he has not spoken much since the incident. He is a quiet boy, according to his mother, and has found the whole experience to be traumatic. Sheriff’s Detective Mitchell Wilson said the emotional impact on the boy had been huge, and that the fatal shooting was something that would stay with him forever.
“Unfortunately, a 13-year-old lost his innocence,” Wilson added. “He had to defend himself.”
The South Carolina boy’s mother added that the incident makes her want to move away from Charleston.
“I’m always scared; there’s so much going on all the time in Charleston,” she said. “All I can do is continue to pray and hope it gets better.”
[Photo by Joe Raedle / Getty Images]