A 12-year-old boy is being charged with first-degree murder in his father's death.
The preteen boy accused of shooting his father to death in Swan Lake appeared in court Tuesday.
Cuffed and in chains, the 12-year-old murder suspect made his way to the courtroom to hear the charges against him.
"(The suspect) charged with murder in the first degree, Idaho code 184001, did kill and murder Paul Danielson, a human being, by shooting him causing injuries to Paul Danielson, by which the victim died,? Bannock County Deputy Prosecutor Ian Service said.
Service indicated that the first degree murder charge demonstrates a crime was something planned and thought-out.
"The difference would be premeditation of forethought before the crime occurred,? Service said.
With such a young suspect, the justice system is very different, even for such a serious charge.
"With an adult it's what's in the best interest of society. With a child it's what's in the best interest of that child,? Bannock County Sheriff Lorin Nielson said.
Swan Lake is an extremely small community, and Sheriff Nielson said this tragic situation has hit the people there hard.
"Everybody knows everybody, and both the victim and the suspect were well known in the community,? Nielson said.
The court hasn't yet determined whether the 12-year-old suspect will be tried as an adult.
If left in the juvenile system, any sentence would have to be completely over by the boy's 21st birthday.
Or the court could aim for a blended sentence. If found guilty in that case, the pre-teen suspect would be under the adult system's jurisdiction, but use juvenile programs.
"A blended sentence isn't done very often because these charges don't occur very often for such young ages. But at the same time, it's not out of consideration at this point,? Service said.
Paul Danielson, 46, died late Friday night near Swan Lake. Results of an autopsy released Monday showed Danielson died of small caliber wounds to the head.
KIFI and KIDK do not release the names of minors being charged with crimes unless they are being tried as adults. It is unknown if the boy is being tried as an adult at this time.