Police say that the gun used by a 14-year-old boy to kill two family members was a birthday present.
Joe Robert Lankford, age 44, and Virginia Dare Gaston, age 83, were killed by gunshots Monday. The third victim, an 80-yea- old woman, was taken to the hospital and was listed in critical condition Tuesday afternoon. Her name has not been released.
At 11:56 p.m. Monday, the boy called 911 and said he had shot three of his family members. Spartanburg Public Safety Director Tony Fisher said at a news conference Tuesday morning the boy told them he would be waiting for officers to arrive and would put the gun–a .22-caliber rifle–on the dining room table.
Captain Art Littlejohn of the Spartanburg Police department says no decision has been made yet on whether the teen will be charged as an adult.
We are still talking with the solicitors among the investigators that (are) working on the case. He is a juvenile, and those things will be petitioned to family court. Then, at some point, they’ll make the decision as to whether or not to try to waive those charges.
Police say the gun used in the crime was a birthday present from the boy’s father to him when he turned 14.
Littlejohn says no motive has been uncovered for the shootings and the teen displayed no behavioral warning signs of mental instability.
We looked at school records and talked with other family members and neighbors and there’s absolutely not anything that would indicate this type of behavior.
The boy is currently being held at the SC Department of Juvenile Justice.