Boy, 11, Found Guilty of Fatally Shooting 8-Year-Old Girl Who Wouldn't Show Him Her Puppy
An 11-year-old Tennessee boy has been found guilty of killing an 8-year-old girl after she refused to show him her new puppies.
Benjamin Tiller will likely remain in custody until he turns 19. He was found guilty of first degree murder last week in the October death of third grader MaKayla Dyer.
Dyer was killed by a 12-gauge shotgun blast to the chest.
Prosecutors said Tiller, who attended school with Dyer, was speaking to her and two other girls from the window of his mobile home in a trailer park in the small town of White Pine when he asked Dyer if he could see her new puppies.
When Dyer refused, authorities said Tiller retrieved his father's rifle and returned to the window.
After Dyer laughed and said she didn't believe the gun was real, "Mr. Tiller then made certain the gun was loaded, cocked the hammer of the gun, and shot the victim just above the heart," according to court documents posted by WATE.
Tiller then tossed the firearm out the window beside the girl's body.
According to the order to place Tiller in juvenile custody written by Judge Dennis Roach, it was Dyer's own mother who found her dying.
"The mother of the child knelt on the ground and picked her child up, placing her child in her arms as she passed away.
"Mr. Tiller is in desperate need of help, and our society has a great need for Mr. Tiller to receive it."
Tiller’s great grandmother told WATE the family plans to appeal the ruling.