published Friday, March 11th, 2011

Gunplay ends in tragic death

  • photo
    Jesse Myles Compton - homicide victim Contributed Photo

“OK, Mom. I’ll be home soon.”

Those were some of the last words Cheryl Compton remembers hearing from her 18-year-old son over the phone Wednesday evening.

“Very pleasant,” she said recalling the sound of his voice. “I just remember saying, ‘Make sure you keep a lot of gas in your truck. I don’t want you to run out.’ Mom stuff.”

Within a few hours, Jesse Myles Compton would be lying dead at his best friend’s home with a gunshot wound to the chest after a group of teens passed around two pistols, examining them.

On Thursday morning, Myles K. Stout, 20, was charged with reckless homicide, accused of pointing one of the guns at Compton’s chest and pulling the trigger, according to a Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office arrest report.

As of Thursday night, Stout remained at Hamilton County Jail on a $25,000 bond.

“The magazine clips were taken out of both of [the guns] and bullets taken out of the chambers. And they were passing them around, looking at them,” Compton’s father, Jesse Compton, said Thursday sitting next to his wife and recalling the account told to them by their son’s friend at the scene.

“And Myles Stout had his. He put the clip in, cocked it where a bullet would go into the chamber and my son said, ‘Don’t point that at anybody, especially me,’” Jesse Compton said.

When sheriff’s office detectives arrived at the house at 9125 Stoney Mountain Drive in East Brainerd, Myles Compton was already dead.

A phone message was not returned at Stout’s home Thursday. Compton’s parents said their son didn’t really know Stout. The two had “friended” each other on Facebook.

Myles Stout first told authorities that Compton had shot himself, according to the report, but when confronted with information from witnesses stating otherwise, he admitted to detectives that he shot and killed Compton. He said they were horseplaying.

This isn’t Stout’s first brush with the law.

Stout was expelled from McCallie School in 2009 after his involvement in a fight between McCallie and Signal Mountain High School students, which ended in the suspension of all nine Signal Mountain students involved and the expulsion of four from McCallie, including Stout.

He was charged with underage drinking in the incident, and pleaded guilty to the charge, receiving a suspended sentence, according to court records. He was placed on probation, records show.

In the meantime, Compton’s parents remember the life of their oldest child, who recently graduated in December from East Hamilton School. With proud smiles, they said he was an honor student.

“You knew when he was there. He had a beautiful smile,” said Cheryl Compton, whose voice began to crack as fresh tears emerged from her tired eyes. “Very happy child. Never gave us trouble. We didn’t have to make him study. He did everything.”

They look at his Facebook page and read entries left by friends. They take comfort in the words.

“I am so sorry for you, Mrs. Compton. We don’t understand why this happened. Myles was such an amazing guy. He treated all the girls like princesses. He was always smiling and laughing & makin everyone around him do it also. I don’t think anybody realized how he had made such a wonderful and great impact on everyone's life,” writes Cassidy Sims. “He was the happiest and friendliest person I ever had the joy of knowing. ... We all know he will do great things up there with God. He needed a new angel and Myles definitely earned his wings. It’s not goodbye. It’s see you LATER & he will be missed.”

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cannonball said...

Can't blame the weapon. This kid needed some professional training and firearms instruction.

March 11, 2011 at 6:07 a.m.
frig_n_frak said...

Professional training is one way of avoiding this situation - however, not having the gun in the first place is a fail-safe method of avoiding this particular tragedy (no gun = no chance of gunshot). my heart goes out to the family, because of regardless of what could have prevented this tragedy, it still happened.

March 11, 2011 at 6:22 a.m.
hcirehttae said...

He pointed the gun at his chest and pulled the trigger? Professional training needed??

March 11, 2011 at 7:09 a.m.
moon4kat said...

How many "accidental" deaths attributed to guns? It keeps happening. The gun-rights crowd say all that's needed is professional training, yet they do nothing to make sure that happens BEFORE guns are sold and left lying around for the reckless to "play" with.

March 11, 2011 at 9:39 a.m.
moon4kat said...

I am so sorry for the family and friends of Jesse Compton. They must be devastated by this horrendous (and preventable) event. My deepest condolences to all who knew Jesse Compton. What a shame and what a loss. He seemed a fine young man. I blame the NRA for this, and the myriad other "accidental" deaths caused by the reckless proliferation and use of guns.

March 11, 2011 at 9:46 a.m.
Veritas said...

Moon4kat,would you care to elaborate on you statement,"I blame the NRA for this". An elaboration will reveal your misguided thought process. I've owned guns, especially pistols since I was 14, never have I shot anyone nor has anyone been accidentally harmed by my guns. However, I will say that a gun saved my life and that of a dear friend when we were attacked in broad daylight by a knife wielding lunatic in Savannah. The gun was there when I needed it, the police arrived 15 minuted later. I am a proud member of the NRA. I await your response.

March 11, 2011 at 10:09 a.m.
bigbearzzz said...

I agree. The gun is not the issue at hand, but rather the individual who has his finger on the trigger. We have to realize that removing guns from the scenario does not eliminate the problem at hand. You are always going to have individuals who are either uneducated, immature, stupid, ruthless, or who feel the need to invoke fear into society. I personally like my option of protection from such individuals and would like it everybody would stop trying to strip me of this right. Fix the real problem and quit trying to throw blame on gun makers and the NRA. They didnt create the criminals, thugs, and punks.....we did. We all do on a daily basis by our very actions, words and deeds. Remember that the next time you lose your calm and flip a guy off because he cut you off on the interstate. The opposite of love is hate. And its real easy for me to show hate than it is love. But in showing hate to one another, by neglecting or turing our eyes to the needy, we are in fact contributing to the very society that is now trying to destroy each other and us. I know this is not the case in this story, obviously education and immaturity is with the facts that we have been presented thus far. But ask yourself, have I contributed to the deliquency of our society by my very actions or lack there of, or have I done something today to help heal it? Just a thougt.

March 11, 2011 at 10:29 a.m.

You anti-gun people are stuck on stupid. Here are the statistics on deaths from accident discharge of a firearm. (http://webappa.cdc.gov/sasweb/ncipc/mortrate10_sy.html) More people die from auto "accidents" than gun "accidents". (http://www-fars.nhtsa.dot.gov/Main/index.aspx) I'm not talking about just a few more, I am talking about tens of thousands more. Why don't you work against the proliferation of transportation?

How about that nasty and evil alchohol (http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/6089353/ns/health-addictions/)which also causes far more death than gun accidents? You should speak out against that before you start in on guns.

How about accidental drownings? They number far more than accidental gun deaths. Let's outlaw water!

There are more deaths from accidental falls than gun accidents. Let's outlaw standing upright. You can't fall if you are already down. It seems to be the only safe thing for you to do. Just roll over every once in a while, bed sores are deadly too.

Long story short, life is dangerous and stupid kills more people than guns every have. I will whole heartedly support your crusade against that.

March 11, 2011 at 10:34 a.m.
dao1980 said...

It's always an easy way to tell the stupid kids in the room.

Just look for the crowd cowering in the corner, hiding from some inanimate object they have deemed "evil" or "unnecessary" as though we can by law, erase all previous existence of said object.

They are probably the same crowd who's personal lives reflect an obvious lack of comprehension in regards to cause and affect.

March 11, 2011 at 10:44 a.m.
Sailorman said...

moonbat says "myriad other "accidental" deaths caused by the reckless proliferation and use of guns" and blames the NRA.

You should be more concerned about the reckless proliferation and use of ignorance.

From the CDC

Total accidental deaths per year (all causes), U.S....96,000

Fatal firearms accidents per year...1,100 2.5%

    Fatal firearms accidents age 0-5...17

    Fatal firearms accidents age 5-14...121

    Fatal firearms accidents age 15-24...401

Fraction of all Emergency Room visits that involve firearms accidents...0.2%

Nothing anyone says for or against firearms will bring this young man back nor will it prevent the next act of stupidity. Tragedy for everyone involved.

March 11, 2011 at 10:44 a.m.
harrystatel said...

Stout, a 20-year-old pyschopath, committed murder, not reckless homicide.

I'm waiting for the lawyers, psychiatrists, judges, and the injustice system to turn Stout loose for future rampages.

Before it's over Stout will be blaming Compton (oops, too late—Stout already did), the NRA, poor toilet training, the moon and stars, and alien abductions.

With the right amount of money spread around the "justice system", he'll skate. Then we'll be reading about his next victim.

March 11, 2011 at 12:07 p.m.
ellissmith said...

According to the BBC [ http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/3244709.stm ], once they banned guns in Britain, a "knife crime" epidemic began to arise. This is now a very serious issue over there. Humans killed each other a for long time before we invented guns, and they'll still be slicing and bludgening each other for years to come if we ban them — except for the criminals, who will mysteriously still manage to acquire guns, as Australia and England discovered.

March 11, 2011 at 12:46 p.m.
moon4kat said...

Veritas, it seems to me that the NRA has relentlessly flogged the idea of gun ownership as a virtual "necessity" for anyone paranoid enough to think so. They have rather indiscriminantly encouraged everyone (irrespective of their mental instability, lack of training, etc.) to obtain a gun. And, the NRA has fought against every form of permits, background checks, and registration. Having lived in large cities and rural towns over the course of 60+ years, I can say with some authority that there have been many situations that would only have been made much, much worse by the presence of a gun.

March 11, 2011 at 1:51 p.m.
moon4kat said...

To Veritas, Salilorman, et al. -- and, I'm not trying to take away your damn guns. But, I sure wish the gun crowd would do something to police itself. Oh, right, I guess that's like asking industrial polluters to be self-regulating. And, we all know how that turns out.

March 11, 2011 at 1:57 p.m.
LibDem said...

"Law-abiding citizens use guns to defend themselves against criminals as many as 2.5 million times every year..." Libertarians4Freedom, you've got to move to a nicer neighborhood!

March 11, 2011 at 2:05 p.m.
SeaSmokie59er said...

Lib4Freedom, I'm still waiting to know where you got this quote. I have been seeing it since 2002 and would like to know if it's been updated.

March 11, 2011 at 3:58 p.m.
angieburton said...

What about a commercial for a local gun supplier that blatently PROMOTES gun irresponsibilty? It portrays a woman returning home with 2 little children who catches a burgler on her porch out of the corner of her eye. She ushers her kids out of the room through an adjoining room that just so happens to have a LOADED RIFLE PROPPED up against the door jam which she grabs and saves the day. Seriously? A loaded gun right out in the open where any child could get it. Shame on the advertiser and shame on the stations who continue to run it!

March 11, 2011 at 4:34 p.m.
Marathon5454 said...

A drunk "Very rich kid" kills a honorable young man--Give the rich kid a death sentence--That's what the "rich kid" gave Myles Compton

March 11, 2011 at 8:43 p.m.
Marathon5454 said...

That isn't "gunplay" That is Murder

March 11, 2011 at 8:59 p.m.
SeaSmokie59er said...

Cars kill people. Cigarettes kill people. Falling bookshelves kill people. And guns kill people. Guns, when used properly, are intruments of death. Only a fool would think otherwise.

March 12, 2011 at 3:07 a.m.
sd said...

dao1980 said, "It's always an easy way to tell the stupid kids in the room."

Yeah, they pick up a gun, load it, shoot one of the guys standing next to them, then try to lie about it.

Why is this an anti/pro gun discussion when it should be a sentencing discussion? Stout picked up a gun, loaded it, and shot a guy at close range in the chest. How is this reckless homicide with a $25k bond (which will easily be met)?

Oh, wait, I know. He's a white, former McCallie student. Ta da.

March 12, 2011 at 8:23 a.m.
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