13-Year-Old Charged With Attempted Murder - NewsChannel5.com | Nashville News, Weather & Sports

13-Year-Old Charged With Attempted Murder

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by Heather Graf

WOODBURY, Tenn. - An armed gunman robbing a business, these days, isn't uncommon - but what if that gunman was just 13-years-old?  Police say it happened last night in Cannon County.

Rick Smotherman opened up his store on Main Street in Woodbury about a year-and-a-half ago.  He says business at Leland's Furniture & Home Decor, so far, has been good.

On Thursday night, he was closing the store at about 5 p.m., when he heard the front door open.

"Then when I looked up, the gun was in my face," he said.  "And he didn't say a word.  A young kid with a hood on.  I looked at him and said man, you've got to be kidding me!"

Smotherman says the would-be robber looked so young that at first, he thought it was a joke.

"So I walked around from the counter and grabbed him and we wrestled for four or five minutes inside here, me trying to get the gun away from him, because I actually thought it was a prank."

During that struggle, he says the teen yelled several times for a friend to help him, but that friend never appeared.

Eventually, the struggle spilled out onto the sidewalk.

Smotherman says he was trying to get the teen outside, to attract the attention of other nearby business owners who could perhaps help him.

"That's when he broke loose from me," he said.  "He stood back, raised the gun, pointed it at me, and shot me."

Luckily, Smotherman has some mighty quick reflexes.  He was able to jump out of the way so that the bullet grazed his side, instead of hitting right in the middle of the abdomen, where he says the teen aimed.

That 13-year-old boy, whose name has not been released, ran away at that point.  He was arrested a short time later at a nearby park.  He's now charged with attempted murder and aggravated robbery.

Several business owners in downtown Woodbury told us the incident is so scary, it's prompted them to start arming themselves for protection.

Meanwhile, Smotherman says about 95% of his customers pay with credit or debit cards.  So the reality is that even if the teen robber would've been successful, Rick had very little cash on hand inside the store, to give him.

email: hgraf@newschannel5.com

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