A 13-year-old Massachusetts boy shot a 12-year-old boy with his mother’s rifle this week following an alleged case of bullying.

The two boys, who live near each other, reportedly had an ongoing feud, according to police. While a dispute on Facebook may have contributed to the incident, authorities say the 12-year-old and two other boys wandered near the 13-year-old boy’s house, causing him to feel threatened. He then retrieved his mother’s .22-caliber rifle from a locked cabinet and went outside.

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“My understanding is he fired one warning shot, and then he aimed the .22 long rifle at the victim and shot him,” Taunton Police Lieutenant Paul Roderick said, adding, “As I understand it may have been a form of bullying that had taken place, maybe via Facebook.”

Officers arrived at the scene shortly after noon on Monday and discovered the 12-year-old was suffering from a gunshot wound to his rib cage, as a bullet went through his left arm and got lodged into his torso. The victim was then taken to a nearby hospital, where he is being treated for his non life-threatening injuries. His attacker faces charges of assault and battery with a deadly weapon, discharging a weapon within 500 feet of a dwelling and carrying a loaded weapon without a license.

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“He’s a good kid. They’ve been doing this for two years, he just had enough,” the suspect’s mother defended her son to CBS in Boston. “My son had called me and he told me they came in the yard and tried to stab him and he was scared so he went like as the kids were like leaving the yard, running away from the yard, he went to go shoot in the air and it shot him in the arm.”

Carlin Becker About the author:
Carlin Becker is an Associate Content Editor at Rare. Follow her on Twitter @_carlbeck.
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