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Child, 4, hit in head with hammer during 2 a.m. fight

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RICHMOND, Va. -- A 12-year-old boy was charged with aggravated assault and taken to juvenile detention  after he accidentally hit his four-year-old brother with a hammer during a fight early Wednesday morning.

She says they rushed her youngest son to the hospital  where he received a few stitches, and now he he's recovering at home.

Investigators said the 12-year-old boy picked up the hammer while he fought with someone inside a unit on Raven Street in Mosby Court at about 2 a.m. While he swung the hammer during the fight, he struck the four-year-old child in the head, police said.

The child's mother said family was at her home watching a movie when someone told the 12-year-old boy to put down a game he was playing. He refused, picked up a hammer and took a swing at his uncle, his mom said. He missed and instead hit his little brother.

Clarke-Tunstall's 12-year-old son is now behind bars at the Richmond Juvenile Detention center, charged with Aggravated Assault, and he is expected to remain in juvenile detention until a September 4 hearing.   During that time, he's scheduled to go through a mental evaluation.

​"He was crying, upset, irate.  He was in panic and really didn't know what was going on at the present moment," said Clarke-Tunstall.

Her son has been diagnosed with ADHD and another behavioral disorder called Oppositional Defiant disorder, which is when children show a pattern of disobedience and hostility towards authority figures.

​The 12-year-old's mother says he takes medication but wasn't sure if he took it before Wednesday's attack.

Clarke-Tunstall worries about her son who is now going through the legal system.

"I just want him to get the current help that he needs," said Clarke-Tunstall

She want the public to know that she would never put her kids in danger.

"I love all five of my children.  They are my world.  Love your kids.  Hug your kids and let them know that there's nothing like a mother's love," said Clarke-Tunstall.

We reached out to Richmond's department of Social Services, but they couldn't comment on this case.
At this point, the mother has not been charged with a crime.


  • Gail

    Why in the world is a 12 year old & a 2 year old outside at 2 A.M. That is poor parenting at its best. The parent should be charged at minimum with neglect for those kids being out that late alone. Obviously they weren’t being monitored or “parented” if they were out there & involved in a fight!

  • tracy

    the parent cannot be charged as there is a lower set of standards for some.not to mention the riots we could have

    • Hyuck

      If the rioters want to burn their own neighborhood to the ground, so be it. Seems to be the way to do it eh?

    • lindsey

      didnt know a hammer had to be locked away. if thats the case nothing should be laying around. practically anything can be used as a weapon idiot.

      • athynz

        I’m going to assume the common sense part of the post you replied to escapes you. One does not leave a tool out once one is done with it in a house with children due to a scenario much like this happening.

      • mike

        if you have to put a hammer away for fear of a 12 year old getting to it, you failed your child. a 12 year old should be mature enough and have sense enough to be around a hammer. hence, this child obviously wasnt raised right. You have the nerve to bring up common sense. One who doesnt have common sense assumes a 12 year old cant handle being around a hammer. This 12 yr old wasnt raised properly.

  • krista

    Ms. Darshee,

    Was the child already in his bedroom refusing to go to sleep or out in the common areas? Where was the hammer from? Was the smaller child in bed asleep and get hit while asleep or was he up and running around also? Additional information would help prevent the assumptions you r concerned about.

  • Kimmy

    It’s a bit strange for children to be up at that time of morning, even moreso with the mindset to “fight”. As disturbing as that is within itself, this 12 year old child obviously has some psychological issues to strike out so violently against another person without any mention of self defense. Hopefully, he will get the help he needs and guidance for his parents. Thank God the younger child will be okay. This could have been a totally different story.

  • mario

    He wasn’t outside they all was in the room together and he does have a mental problem. The thing is that he was rold to go to bed and he reacted violently. The main problem is the system is not meant for the parents anymore. Kids can get away with alot now then 30 to 50 years ago. If she would’ve given him and good old fashion butt whoopin he probably would have call the cops on her. But hell call them because by the time they would have gotten there he couldn’t call no one else.

  • kim

    all of these scientific names for behavioral issues are pure bs. Discipline the kids from young and there wouldnt be these dumb terms doctors are coming up with now to make money; SHOW them how to respect, love and behave and they would know how to act! Oppositional Defiant disorder my tail—that just mean bad a$$ child. Raise these kids by not only telling them right from wrong but showing them! Too many parents are not teaching good behavior and are showing their kids how to direspect autorities by how they act in front of their kids. Kids are sponges and are only products of their environment. Then when the children act like the parents do, they want to take them to the doctor; no, be a parent! They cant tame the monster THEY created so they want to put them on meds and say they have a mental problem….PURE bs.Nothing is wrong with these kids, they are just not properly raised.

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