Skip to main content

Mom: Boy charged with killing father 'loved his dad'

  • Story Highlights
  • Mother: Son rarely in trouble outside of incidents like speaking out of turn in class
  • Boy will be allowed home for holidays, has asked to watch "Kung Fu Panda" movie
  • Boy is suspected in two shooting deaths, but prosecutors look to drop one charge
  • The 8-year-old is scared, in "cell by himself" but visits often with mother, she says
  • Next Article in Crime »
Decrease font Decrease font
Enlarge font Enlarge font

(CNN) -- The mother of an 8-year-old boy suspected in the shooting deaths of his father and another man said Monday that the youngster "loved his dad" and had a strong relationship with him.

"He's a very good little boy," Eryn Bloomfield said on ABC's "Good Morning America." "What happened to being innocent until proven guilty?"

For legal reasons, Bloomfield -- who is identified in court papers as Eryn Thomas -- could not discuss details of the case. She said she is not even allowed to discuss the case with her son.

Prosecutors in Apache County, Arizona, filed a motion Friday to dismiss one of the two murder charges against the boy -- the charge involving the death of his father. The filing gave no explanation, saying only, "The state believes the interest of justice will be served by such a dismissal."

Authorities last week released a videotape of the boy's police interview in which he initially denied any involvement in the shootings, but later said he had shot his already-wounded father "because he was suffering." Video Watch the boy talk to police »

Legal questions surround the interview. One of the boy's defense attorneys said he was not read his rights and had no attorney or parent present. Police have not responded publicly to those complaints.

Asked what she heard on the interview tape, Bloomfield responded, "A scared little boy, that's what I hear -- someone who's very afraid of what's going on."

"He had a very good relationship with his father. He did a lot with him," she said. "They did everything together. He loved his dad."

She described her son as "very outgoing. He loves animals. He likes to ride his dirt bike, skateboarding, you know, outdoor things."

Asked if he's ever been in trouble at school, she replied, "No. Not at all. I mean, acting out as far as not raising your hand when he needs to speak -- you know, just normal stuff like that."

The boy lived with his father, Vincent Romero, 29, in St. Johns, Arizona. Bloomfield lives in Mississippi.

The Apache County Superior Court clerk's office said the latest legal agreement between the boy's parents was from April 2006. The mother had weekly visitation rights and had the boy on some weekends and holidays, according to court documents.

Romero and Tim Romans, who rented a room in Romero's home, were found dead inside the house November 5. Police said the next day that the boy had confessed to shooting the men with a .22-caliber weapon. Video Watch why observers find the interrogation troubling »

The killings shook the town of about 4,000 residents near the New Mexico border.

Trying to hold back tears, Bloomfield told ABC that her son is scared and living alone at a juvenile detention center. The other children were removed so that older juveniles could not influence him "in the wrong way," she said.

"So he's in there by himself, in his cell by himself," she said.

Authorities have said the boy is attending school at the detention facility. Apache County Court Administrator Betty Smith said earlier this month, "Every effort is being made to see that he's comfortable."

Bloomfield described heart-wrenching visits -- 30 minutes each day -- when she can speak to her son through a glass partition.

"I get two visits with him that are physical visits -- to where we sit in a room and he will come and sit in my lap pretty much the whole time and hold onto me," she added.

She will be allowed 48 hours with him at home over the Thanksgiving holiday, she said.

"We're going to watch movies, play games, try to keep things normal as possible," she said, adding that the boy had picked out the movie "Kung Fu Panda."

Officials from the juvenile detention center and a court-appointed guardian will be present during the visit, Smith said. According to a report in The Arizona Republic, Judge Michael Roca warned the media not to contact the juvenile.


"The minor is off-limits," he said, according to the newspaper. "I think common decency should protect him, but, just in case, he is not to be contacted."

Asked what she'll say to him on Thanksgiving, Bloomfield answered, "I tell him every day that I love him, and I don't know how much more I can express that, but I definitely plan on doing that -- just to let him know that I'm here for him and how much I do love him."

All About Murder and HomicideArizona

  • E-mail
  • Save
  • Print