Nine-year-old boy charged with murder after mother shot dead

A nine-year-old boy has been charged with murder after his mother was killed with a rifle in their home in southern Michigan.

Court documents show he is also facing a felony firearm charge.

It is unclear if he has been charged as an adult or juvenile.

St Joseph County prosecutor John McDonough told WWMT-TV the woman’s body was found early on Monday morning in Fawn River Township, about 160 miles (260km) west-southwest of Detroit.

One local mother said the boy had threatened to kill her eight-year-old daughter in February last year.

“He told her that he wanted to get a knife and stab her and watch her die, and watch her mother cry,” Alecia Pieronski told the broadcaster.

She said she warned the school’s principal about what the boy had said.

“Maybe this a wake-up call to other schools when you have that troubled child screaming for help to do something,” she added.

Sheriff Bradley Balk said the boy was undergoing a psychiatric evaluation at a state-run juvenile facility.

Authorities have not released the circumstances of the killing or details of why the child is considered a suspect.