East Feliciana Parish Sheriff's Office officials say they believe an
8-year-old intentionally pulled the trigger and killed an elderly woman
Thursday evening right after playing 'Grand Theft Auto IV'. Although
they believe it was an intentional crime, according to Louisiana law,
the child will not be charged.
In what is now being called a homicide, the Sheriff's Office says it
happened at the Country Breeze mobile home park on LA 67 near Slaughter,
LA just after 5 p.m.
Investigators said they found a woman with a gunshot wound to the
head. She was pronounced dead at the scene. According to family members
of the victim, her name was Marie Smothers. Smothers was 90 years old.
In a release from the Sheriff's Office, it says although the child
initially told investigators that he accidentally shot Smothers while
playing with a firearm, the investigation has led them to believe the
child intentionally shot her. Smothers was shot in the back of the head
while she was in the living room watching television.
The release also states: "By accounts of relatives of the victim, as
well as friends of the family, the victim and the juvenile had a normal,
loving, relationship." "Although a motive for the shooting is unknown
at this time investigators have learned that the juvenile suspect was
playing a video game on the Play Station III "Grand Theft Auto IV", a
realistic game that has been associated with encouraging violence and
awards points to players for killing people, just minutes before the
An autopsy was performed Friday afternoon, but results have not been released at this time.
The 8-year-old suspect was released to his parents Thursday night. His name has not been released because of his age.
Authorities say that Louisiana law prohibits them from charging the child with a crime because of his age.
The law states:
"Those who have not reached the age of 10 years are exempt from
criminal responsibility. However, nothing in this article shall affect
the jurisdiction of juvenile courts as established by the constitution
and statutes of this state."
The investigation is ongoing.