The gang of robbers broke into the family home in Francisco Álvarez. Photo via La Nación

When six thieves broke into a family home in Francisco Álvarez, a town in the Greater Buenos Aires district of Moreno, they were in for a surprise: an armed 13-year-old boy who defended himself and his family with gunshots, killing one of the men.

The 13-year-old son of two insurance salespeople was in his bedroom at around 9:15 PM last night when he saw his mother being shoved into the house by the strangers who had arrived in a grey Volkswagen. They were all armed with machine guns, wearing bulletproof vests, and demanding to be given cash, according to Infobae.

The boy picked up his parents’ 9mm pistol and confronted the criminals, firing the weapon. One of the robbers also fired. A stray shot hit the wall and, rebounding, grazed the head of the boy’s 11-year-old sibling.

His father, Marcelo Salinas, explained what had happened in an interview with radio station La Red: “He saw them hitting my wife and demanding money. He also got very upset when he saw that they had grabbed his 11-year-old brother by the hair, so he went and grabbed a gun that belongs to me and he fired.”

One of the attackers was shot twice in the armpit and fell dead on the patio. The police discovered later that he was wearing a bulletproof vest, inscribed “Policía” but without a serial number, meaning it didn’t belong to the Buenos Aires force.

The robber fell dead on the patio. Photo via Infobae

The other five robbers escaped in the car, abandoning the robbery. The car, which had been stolen earlier in Merlo, was found abandoned 10 blocks away.

“I don’t know how I’m going to get my son out of this situation, it’s ruined our lives,” said the boy’s father. He added that the children don’t want to return home and that his son cannot sleep for his crying. Salinas also confirmed that the weapon was registered and that it was the third time they had been robbed since moving into that house.

The law enforcement investigators said that on first analysis the child was acting in “clear self-defense.”