HENDERSONVILLE, Tenn. - A 15-year-old boy appeared in court accused of bludgeoning death of his mother over the weekend in Hendersonville.
Authorities identified the woman as 46-year-old Melanie Davis, whose older son, a 16-year-old, found her dead and their Hendersonville house on fire early Saturday morning.
Sumner County Sheriff Sonny Weatherford said the 15-year-old was arrested nearby and he later confessed to killing Davis.
Investigators haven't released a motive but said the younger boy has been charged with criminal homicide. It hasn't been determined whether he will be charged as a juvenile or an adult, and his name hasn't been released.
In court Tuesday a judge allowed a mental evaluation of the teen to begin immediately; something the teen's attorney believes will reveal more about what was going on inside the Davis household.
"I have information that leads me to believe that there is a lot more problems in this family than have clearly appeared in the press and anything I've seen reported," said attorney Randy Lucas.
Lucas insisted that this was a case of a disturbed teenager who didn't need to be charged as an adult.
"At this point he is just barely 15 years old. He has been 15 for less than a month. He is a boy and I intend to fight the transfer hearing in every way I can," said Lucas.
District Attorney Ray Whitley disagreed with Lucas, saying that the case was serious and needed to be moved to adult court.
"He has been charged with first degree murder, aggravated arson and attempted first degree murder. If he were to remain in juvenile court, that court would only have control of him until he became 19 years old, which is just four years from now," explained Whitley.
In the end the judge chose to send the 15-year-old to a juvenile facility in Murfreesboro. The hearing to determine if the case will be transferred into criminal court was set for September 18.
Friends of Melanie Davis have started a fund in her name at the Sumner County Bank and Trust. The fund was created to help pay for funeral costs as well to provide for her 16-year-old son, who was put into the custody of neighbors.