Father, stepmother sentenced

Pair get probation for neglect after boy shot father, home in deplorable condition

The father and stepmother of a boy charged in a shooting last year have both been sentenced to probation.

Charles Yancey, 37, and Ruby Yancey, 34, pleaded guilty to a charge of neglect and were each sentenced to two years on probation, according to the Johnson County Prosecutor’s Office.

The two were both charged with a felony count of neglect after Charles Yancey’s then-7-year-old son found a gun in the home and shot his father in November. The neglect charge stemmed from both the child having open access to the gun and what police described as deplorable conditions at the Greenwood home when officers arrived after the shooting. At the time, police said a room where the children slept was covered in trash and clothing, with no floor visible.

The boy was charged with criminal recklessness with a deadly weapon after he shot his father in the wrist. Prosecutor Brad Cooper declined to give an update on the boy’s juvenile case because he is under age 18.

Police said the then-7-year-old and his father got into an argument, and the boy got a gun, loaded it and shot at his father, hitting him in the wrist. Other children were in the room when the shooting happened.

After the shooting, the boy ran out of the home and police found him at his grandparents’ home. He told officers the shooting was not an accident and that he shot his father because he was upset about having to spend the weekend at his father’s home. Officers found the gun used in the shooting under a pile of clothes in the home and found it had jammed, preventing it from firing more than once.

Police also had been called to the family’s home two days before the shooting, on a report that the boy had taken a Taser from Ruby Yancey’s dresser and thrown it away because it didn’t work. At the time, Ruby Yancey told police the boy said he wanted to and had dreamed about killing Ruby and her children and Charles Yancey.

Police had asked about weapons in the home, and Ruby Yancey told officers they were locked up and not accessible to children. On the day of the shooting, the gun that was used in the shooting was kept in a small nightstand no more than 3 feet high, police said. Officers also found ammunition and loaded magazines in the home that also were accessible.

Charles Yancey, who now lives in Franklin, was treated and released. And the boy at the time was taken to Community Hospital South for a psychological evaluation and transferred to Community Hospital North.

Mike Kyle, attorney for Ruby Yancey, who remains in Greenwood, declined to comment on the case.

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Annie Goeller is managing editor of the Daily Journal. She can be reached at agoeller@dailyjournal.net or 317-736-2718.