Logan Tipton was asleep when a man broke into his family’s home in Versailles, Kentucky, picked up a kitchen knife and attacked him as his dad tried to fight off the intruder. Ronald Exantus, 32, has been charged with murder and burglary and appeared in court.
He has no known connection with the family and is believed to live more than 175miles away.
Logan’s two siblings were also injured in the attack, but are expected to recover.
Court documents suggest the intruder broke into the home and armed himself with the knife before wandering around the home.
After entering a bedroom where four children were sleeping, he began stabbing Logan in the head at random.
The boy’s 11-year-old sister is believed to have saved his siblings’ lives by launching herself at the man and screaming for her father.
He rushed into the room and was able to detain the attacker until police arrived.
The appalling crime has sent shockwaves through the small town of Versailles.
The family home remains decorated with Christmas lights and childrens’ bikes were spotted outside on the lawn.
It is understood they have told police and friends they cannot return to the house. A fundraising page has been set up to help them relocate.
“It’s just a horrible thing, makes you wonder why this would happen to this little boy. It’s just so sad,” neighbour Tiffany Crow told WKYT.