Limestone County Sheriff’s Office: Gun son used to murder father may have been found

Daniel James Thornton

Deputies are investigating the death of a 51-year-old male who was shot at a home on New Garden Road.

Posted: Apr 1, 2021 5:07 PM

The Limestone County Sheriff’s Office said it has recovered what is believed to be the weapon used in the March 29 murder of David Thornton, 51.

After conducting a thorough search of the subject property located in the 22,000 block of New Garden Road, the office said investigators discovered a 357 handgun in a burn pile located on the property.

They also found three spent shells.

The handgun has been sent to forensics for comparison with the projectiles recovered from the scene.

Daniel James Thornton, 29, the son of the victim, has been charged with murder and is being held in the Limestone County Detention Center. No bond has been set at this time.

From earlier:

A Limestone County man is being charged with murder in the shooting death of his father.

Daniel Thornton, 27, is accused of murdering his father - 51-year-old David Thornton - by shooting him several times early Monday in their home on New Garden Road in the Piney Chapel Community.

The two men got into a physical fight before the shooting, according to the Limestone County Sheriff's Office.

Previous story:

The Limestone County Sheriff’s Office said David Thornton, 51, was found dead early Monday morning from a gunshot wound to his chest and head, and said his son is a “person of interest” in the case.

The sheriff’s office said Daniel Thornton, 27, was alone at home with his father in the 22,000 block of New Garden Road in the Piney Chapel community about 3 a.m. Monday when the shooting took place.

Daniel Thornton told investigators he was in the bathroom, about 10 feet from where his father’s body was found, when he heard gunshots and then found his father dead.

But instead of calling for medical or law enforcement help, the sheriff’s office said, Daniel Thorton called one of David Thornton’s friends. Once that person arrived, the sheriff’s office was contacted.

The sheriff’s office said it was discovered the father and son had fought several hours earlier, with Daniel Thornton stiking his father several times.

Daniel Thornton also told authorities he had used methamphetamine in the hours leading up to the shooting, the sheriff’s office said.

The murder weapon has not been found, according to the news release.

"Daniel Thornton is the person of interest in this case, and the Limestone County Sheriff’s Office feels that they have sufficient evidence to approach the Limestone County District Attorney’s Office to seek charges,” the release said.

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