A 14-year-old North Carolina boy shot and killed a 18-year-old man who was trying to break into his grandmother’s home Tuesday while he was there alone with the elderly woman.
Investigators said the incident occurred shortly before 5:15 p.m. near Charlotte. They said the 14-year-old and his grandmother were in the home when two men tried breaking in, reported the Charlotte Observer.
George Wyant, the homeowner and the teen’s grandfather, told the newspaper that the intruders were on the deck in the back of the house and trying to get through a sliding-glass door. He said his grandson warned the men to leave.
“He told them, ‘Stop, I’ve got a gun,'” Wyant said. But the men continued trying to get into the house. So the boy fired and hit his target – 18-year-old Isai Robert Delcid.
Delcid’s brother, 22-year-old Carlos Delcid, fled the scene but was apprehended late Tuesday night and charged with first-degree burglary, police said. Carlos Delcid has a previous charge of felony breaking and entering on his record.
The teen’s grandfather, George Wyant, told Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police that the boy was trying to defend his grandmother.
This is not the first time the family was targeted for a criminal attack.
The boy’s 35-year-old father was shot to death six years ago during a robbery at the auto repair shop he operated in east Charlotte, the grandfather said.
“He had the hood open in his car,” Wyant told WBTV. “He was a mechanic. It was his garage. Somebody came in and shot him.”
The boy was 8 years old at the time of his father’s murder. As he grew older, his grandfather taught him how to use a gun, taking him to shooting ranges for practice, according to the Observer report.
Wyant said Wednesday that someone had tried breaking into his house twice just last month.
“I left the gun here for protection,” he told WBTV.
Investigators were at the scene throughout the night, trying to piece together exactly what happened at the two-story brick home, in a quiet suburban cul-de-sac off of N.C. 218.
Wyant, who owns the home with his wife, told WBTV that his grandson “did a good job” in protecting his grandmother.
Police said the killing “appeared to be justified,” according to the Charlotte Observer.
“These people were trying to break into the house, and (the home’s occupants) were trying to defend themselves,” Lt. Eric Brady told the newspaper.
“It’s not something you can be proud of. But, I’m happy the way it turned out. Because my wife is getting over an illness,” Wyant told WSOC-TV. “What would have happened if he wasn’t there? That’s all I can tell you. What would have happened?”
‘Train up a child’
Jerry Henry, executive director of GeorgiaCarry.org, said the boy is to be commended, as is his grandfather for training him in how to handle a gun.
“This is a perfect example of why firearm safety and training should be taught at an early age. Even though this young man will have to live with the fact that he took another person’s life, he can also rest comfortably with the knowledge that he saved his grandmother from harm,” Henry told WND. “It is also possible and probable that he saved her life by his knowledge and actions. This is the perfect ending to an otherwise terrible story.”
Henry said he has similarly trained his own grandson in safe, responsible firearms use.
“This is also the reason that I trained my 15-year-old grandson on firearm use and safety when he was 6 years old,” he said. “Hopefully he will not have to face this situation, but, if necessary, he will be equipped with the tools to do so.”