Family Says Horn Lake Boy Was “Tortured To Death”

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(Horn Lake, MS) “Shock and horror” is how a prosecutor described the murder case involving an 11-year-old Horn Lake boy.

Tuesday evening, DeSoto County prosecutors charged Tyler Raines’ father and step-mother with capital murder.

Because of the rules of evidence in Mississippi, the assistant DA could not describe the boy's body or his autopsy results, but he says it was all enough to charge the father and step-mother with capital murder.

“For me, I think the charges speak for themselves,” said Horn Lake Police Lt. Scott Evans.

What the capital murder charges mean is that 11-year-old Tyler Raines didn't die in an accident or from natural causes.

Prosecutors say he died from abuse and neglect at the hands of Amanda and Tommy Raines.

Assistant District Attorney Steven Jubera and police detective Scott Evans saw the boy's body the day he was found in the bathroom of the Horn Lake home.

“I can speak personally. Shock, horror,” said Jubera. “I don't think anybody who saw the child will ever be left unaffected.”

“It has been one of the toughest cases that I’ve had to work,” said Evans.

Family members who saw the boy in the funeral home say he had bruises all over, what appeared to be cigarette burns on his face, and ligature marks on his arms and legs, which means he likely had been tied up.

Jubera says the 11-year-old only weighed 56 pounds.

“That’s in the bottom five percentile of what an 11-year-old should weigh,” said Jubera.

The boy lived with his father and step-mother for the last few years.

Tyler’s birth mother says the couple refused to let her see him.

On Wednesday, Ashley Durfee had this to say: “Good parents love their children, not kill their children. I am so angry and hurt that I had to lose my baby. These monsters will pay, but no man can punish them. "

A future court date for Amanda and Tommy Raines has not yet been set.

Because they are charged with capital murder, they both could face the death penalty.

Both of their bonds have been set at $250,000.

The Department of Human Services is taking care of the other children.


  • Joe

    what an idiot you are Nick… make a statement like that based on nothing but your own ignorance

    go back to your video game

    • hateliberalcommies

      I totally agree with Joe,,If that’s the best you got nick just shut the h*ll up and let the grown-ups talk.

  • Joan

    Why did the mother allow the abusive couple to keep the child from her? Was he not worth fighting for? Even if she didn’t suspect abuse, who could keep a good mother form her child?

  • ludiebelle

    Have you ever been through the system in Desoto County? You do what the GAL and judge recommends. That mother was probably doing all she could do based on what the court ordered. The person who does the right thing gets penalized and the aggressor goes unpunished. It takes money to fight the system.

    • Dirk Diggler

      Get your facts straight. The just moved here from Marshall County. Desoto County or any other agencies here knew about this situation.

      • Catrice

        Actually Dirk they started here in Desoto area they were in Byhalia with Amanda’s mom because they were evicted from their home here.

    • Independant Adjuster

      ANY citizen can petition the court for ANYTHING. Simply write a letter to the court or judge and file it(even slide it under his door). Lawyers have done a thorough job of having you think they are required; lawyers are NOT required.

  • Pam

    I agree with Joan.. I could care less about how the legal system works in Desoto County. I would work 3 jobs to fight the legal system. IF the dad and stepmother refused to let her see the child that raises a HUGE red flag. Call the police and ask for a welfare check on the child!!!!!!!!!

    • ludiebelle

      Until you have been through the system Pam, you have no idea!! If you had to work 3 jobs to fight them, you certainly wouldn’t get custody. The GAL and judge would see to that. I believe the police were called and were told they couldn’t get involved because it was a civil matter.

  • Linda

    sIt is heartbreaking that anyone could harm an innocent child, but a parent is susposed to love & protect their children & anyone elses if the circumstances call for it. Someone should have noticed something. I don’t know the circumstances of the Mothers role in this but the system needs to change to help more children in abusive & neglected cases. The saddest of all is this child died not knowing love & why he was being hurt. Thank God he is no longer in that torture chamber. The Lord took him from it.

  • VStarr

    This isn’t about “nick” or “hateliberalcommies” or any kind of smart remarks we think should be made. its about a little boy who didnt have a chance in his “hellish world at home with FAMILY”. Its about punishment now for the horrible “parents” that housed him. If i made the laws, they be hanged in the public with out tax payers paying for their “stay” in prison, or for their expensive lethal injection deaths, if they are sentenced that way, and i believe they should be.

  • Suzanne Holliday Clow

    DHS is taking care of the other children? What is the mother bad too?? What in the hell is going on to make these PARENTS kill their kids? and these step parents?? I am sick to my stomach. If someone wouldn’t let me see my kid the DHS would have been called and the police department to do a wellness check on my child there is NO dang excuse I hope they DIE and I hope they die a LONG SLOW AND PAINFUL DEATH!!!

  • austinandjustin

    I don’t know why people have to blame mom. The poor mom has my prayers. From what I’ve read she has tried to, and been refused from even seeing her son. And all the people who say what they would have done, really don’t know what they are talking about. When a court tells you to do, or not to do, if you don’t obey the court then you would be in jail. And in case you missed it, in jail you cannot care/protect any of your children. It’s obvious why mom and the relatives weren’t allowed to see the child. Dad and stepmom didn’t want anyone to stop them, and they didn’t want to go to jail. The ones at fault are dad and stepmom. What they did was wrong, they knew it and they didn’t care.

  • sadindc

    This story has broken my heart into a million pieces…I don’t understand why the mother wasn’t allowed to see her child and why she would go so long without pursuing the law…besides that, there were other children in this home who had to witness abuse and neglect. Let’s not forget that others were harmed by these two also. Amazes me that these two adults had no family or friends? NO ONE who knew that they were dirtbags and abusing their children??? I heard several stories in reference to a GAL in DC who has been tied to one of these individuals in recent past…shame on you!!!! If you hold a law degree and you specialize in a certain law or you are nominated for a position especially one to protect the welfare of children…then do YOUR job!!! It’s a crying shame that attorneys are more interested in $$$ than doing what is best for children they represent…I know first hand about a GAL…all they were interested in was the money.. they wanted the single father who was trying to get his children from a deadbeat mother to pay both sides…yes that’s the way it is folks…the parent who is decent and has a job is the one who is taken advantage of….it’s a shame and a sad, sad world we live in.

  • Robert

    They should be put to death the same way that loving child died. Children are a blessing and should never have see or much less go through that. Especially by the own people they look up to and trust them to take care of them

  • Shawn Sandusky

    What about Robert Jones’s murder in ’91. This city/town didnt do shit. You all swept it under the table and erased him! He was beaten and choked to death and a plastic bag tied around his head. He had a very abusive Mom, I witnessed this many times and you all didnt even question me and I was with him that evening 5 hours before his death! There is no way in hell you did any investigation. I thank God you stepped up and got this child’s killers but I will never forget or lack of care for my best friend I have missed everyday for decades.

  • 4justice

    RIP Tyler. My heart goes out to family, friends, and loved ones. People are so quick to judge without all of the facts. Shame on you. There are two sides to every story and many times you will not get those facts from the media or the authorities. @ Biological Mom my condolences—May you find strength in these troubled times.

    The system continues to fail us and it failed Tyler. We should not have to wait until tragedy strikes for the system to help save lives. Instead of rubbing salt in open wounds and judging why not use the energy to try to get the system fixed.

    • wolfsden6lynn

      “People are so quick to judge without all the facts”.
      Well, now, WHAT MORE do you need??
      Bruises and burns to the face (bad enough that the funeral home couldn’t conceal them) Ligature marks. Starved little body. ‘Home schooled’ when NONE of the other kids were.
      Yep…I’m gonna judge, all right…and harshly. Will these two pieces of cr*p be they tortured that poor boy? Nope.
      You ever been tortured? Can you even Imagine what that’s like?
      Let alone, to be a CHILD and go through that!
      Did your kids survive? wolf

  • Becky

    No one to hug and kiss him and tell him he’s loved, no one to protect him. There is no telling how long this went on. ** I am trying to get in touch with anyone that reported this family to either dhs or the police dept. I pray that the evidence and court system are enough to take care of,the accused monsters, nothing legally would provide the justice Tyler deserves. I also have heard of several people that requested dhs and/or the police on this family and nothing was done. I know of an investigative reporter that would like to get involved, please help!!? If you respond I’ll get you her name and email address. Please!

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