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Report: Morgan Co.’s father shot and killed by his son who was defending the caretaker


LANCING, Tenn. (WATE) — A Morgan County man was fatally shot by his son Thursday after the elderly man allegedly threatened a guard with a large knife, according to District Attorney General Russell Johnson’s office.

Authorities say Lillard Daniel, 92, was shot dead in his home by his son defending the elderly man’s caretaker, who investigators said was at risk of serious bodily harm or death. Daniel’s son, Ted Daniel, a Texas resident, had been visiting his father when the incident occurred.

A statement says the elder Daniel had an argument with his babysitter and took a long knife. The son begged his father to put the knife down and stop threatening her; the eldest Daniel had already been through other caretakers and the son told his father it was his last chance before being placed in a nursing home.

The 9th Judicial District Attorney’s Office said in a social media statement Thursday that his office is in constant communication with the Morgan County Sheriff’s Office regarding Thursday’s incident.

Authorities said statements indicate Lillard Daniel had the long knife in his hand and was focused on the guard as he walked towards her. The son repeatedly warned his father that he had a gun (a .380 pistol) and told him to put the knife down and stay away from the guard. Lillard Daniel refused.

The report says the son fired twice, hitting his father in the leg and in the stomach area, possibly shooting him through vital organs. 911 was called.

Video footage from the guard’s cellphone showed Daniel Lillard with knife in hand arguing from his recliner, where he fell backwards after being shot. The district attorney’s office said, “This video footage is helpful in showing the gun in Lillard Daniel’s hand and his behavior.”

The old man was taken to hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Ten years ago, in 2012, Lillard Daniel was charged with the murder of Calvin Howard, according to the prosecutor.

Lillard Daniel. (Photo: Morgan County)

“Howard had done heavy crop spraying on Daniel’s farm in Morgan County. Lillard Daniel shot and killed Calvin Howard in an argument over the spray when Daniel refused to pay Howard. District Attorney Russell sued Lillard Daniel, but a mental evaluation obtained by Daniel’s attorney determined that Daniel was incompetent to stand trial. Unable to proceed with the prosecution, the district attorney was able to get the court to remove all firearms from Daniel and his home due to his incompetence.

The district attorney concluded Thursday’s news release about Lillard Daniel’s death that an autopsy had been ordered and had not yet been performed; a final decision will be made following the autopsy and investigation.


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