Mom of 9-Year-Old Charged With 5 Counts of Murder: ‘People Make Mistakes’

October 10, 2019 Updated: October 10, 2019

The mother of a 9-year-old Illinois boy who was charged with five counts of murder insists that he isn’t a “monster” and that he has mental problems.

Katie Alwood, the mother of Kyle Alwood, the boy who stands accused in the case, said that “everyone is looking at him like he’s some kind of monster, but that’s not who he is,” CBS News reported.

Kyle is accused of killing Alwood’s other children, Daemeon and Ariel Wall, who were aged 2 and 1; her grandmother, Kathryn Murray, 69; her fiance Jason Wall, 34; and her niece Rose Alwood, 2.

Officials said that he intentionally set a fire at the family home, killing the five people.

His mother said of the child: “People make mistakes, and that’s what this is. Yes, it was a horrible tragedy, but it’s still not something to throw his life away over.”

She elaborated that she was in the home when the fire broke out when most of the victims were sleeping and was only able to save herself.

Illinois Fire Five Dead
Marie Chockley, a resident of the Timberline Trailer Court, north of Goodfield, Ill., surveys the damage that was caused by a Saturday night fire that killed five residents in a mobile home on April 7, 2019. (Kevin Barlow/The Pantagraph via AP)

“I stood at the window and I told my kids I was sorry I couldn’t save them. Mommy was right here and I loved them. You know, so, at least hopefully they heard that. I told Jason I loved him… And then something told me that they’re gone,” Alwood told CBS.

Alwood remarked that she doesn’t know what is worse: “Hearing him scream, or when it stopped.”

Her son Kyle, she said, was diagnosed with schizophrenia, ADHD, and bipolar disorder.

Goodfield, Illinois in a file photo (Google Maps)

Samantha Alwood, the mother of Rose, who was killed, said she wants Kyle to face punishment.

“I think he should go somewhere until he’s legal age to go to juvie. Then I think he should go to juvie. And then from juvie to prison. Because at the end of the day, whether he meant to or not, he knew what fire did,” Samantha said.

Details of the Fire

The fire started at around 11 p.m. on the night of April 6 at a mobile home in Goodfield, said authorities. The trailer was totally engulfed in flames by the time firefighters arrived on the scene.

The five died of smoke inhalation, the Journal-Star newspaper reported.

Woodford County State’s Attorney Greg Minger said that the child faces five counts of murder, two counts of arson, and one count of aggravated arson.

Minger didn’t reveal any other details about the suspect, including the age or their relationship to the victims, reported The Associated Press.

If convicted, the child could be placed on probation for at least five years but not beyond the age of 21. The child would also likely receive therapy and counseling, according to AP.

Minger told the paper that he went ahead and charged the child after reading official reports about the fire several times.

“It was a heavy decision,” he said. “It’s a tragedy, but at the end of the day it’s charging a very young person with one of the most serious crimes we have.”