JOHNSON COUNTY, Kan. -- A Johnson County teen has about a year left in juvenile detention after gunning down his father in broad daylight.
His motive? He claimed that father abused him.
The murder victim’s dad, and the boy’s grandfather is sharing his perspective about what happened only on FOX 4. He defends his grandson and is fighting for legislation that could make him eligible for early release.
“That's the pride of the fleet. I love him... that's what I see. Just love,” Bob Gay said of his grandson.
Gay holds a picture of he and his grandson tight. It was taken recently, inside a Topeka juvenile correctional center where his now 17-year-old grandson is being held for the murder of his father, Bob’s son Darren Gay.
“It's so difficult because I know he shouldn't be in there. I know he didn't deserve it,” Gay said.
It was a hot July day. The teen’s mom was dropping him off to stay with his dad Darren, when the teen pulled out a 40 caliber glock handgun and fired 16 times, killing his father.
“Do you think he deserved that?” FOX 4’s Megan Brilley asked.
“From what went through in the court, yes,” Gay replied.
Bob sat in court and says what he heard about his son made his stomach turn. He says two witnesses testified that Darren forced the teen to sleep with him at night. Bob says the teen said Darren would inspect him after showers. The defense argued the teen was forced to kill to survive.
“Had I of known everything that came out, I'm sorry I didn't shoot him myself and my poor grandson wouldn't have to go through that,” Gay said.
Bob supports new legislation that could help teens like his grandson. The bill would change the way young offenders are handled in an attempt to keep them out of prison, and instead entered into community-based programs. Johnson County’s district attorney opposes the change, but Bob says options are needed.
“So you're gonna tell me you can be sexually, physically, and mentally abused for 14 years? Where is the justification for it?” Gay asked.
Bob visits his grandson once a week. The two have big plans after his release. Until then he holds a picture tight; a photo of a grandson he says will never be the same, after years of incarceration.
“Just not easy. I wouldn't want anybody to live with it like I have,” Gay said.
Even after the teen is released in March of 2017, he will be under court supervision until he is 23 years old.