It's not often a murder suspect has supporters.
But the Edgar County courtroom was packed as Terrance Payton was formally charged with first degree murder.
The 16-year old will be tried as an adult in the stabbing death of his mother.
"To the people at home that believe Terry Payton is a monster, that believe he is a psychopath, you are dead wrong," said Payton's close friend Jacob Shumaker.
Dozens of Payton's friends came out to support the Paris High School student.
Illinois state police found the body of 53-year old Kathie Payton in her Paris, Illinois home on Thursday night.
Friends believe Payton acted in self-defense.
"I saw him the next day and he said that she came at him with a knife," said Shumaker. "He literally told me it was either him or her. And he's sorry that it's her. He didn't want any of this to happen."
An autopsy performed on Friday found his mother died of multiple stab wounds to the neck and chest.
According to friends, Terrance Payton had problems with his mom and had a history with DCFS, the Department of Children and Family Services.
"A lot of people support Terry right now. I mean, no one deserves to die but at the same time if DCFS or the police wouldn't have dragged their heels and did something about this, this would have never happened," said Shumaker.
Payton faces 20 - 60 years in prison if convicted.
He had no comment for the media, only thanking his supporters.
Payton is currently being held in a juvenile detention center in Danville on $500,000 bond.
Payton was also assigned a public defender in court today.
A preliminary hearing with the lawyer is scheduled for Thursday morning.