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.

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