A Texas father caught a man sexually assaulting his 4-year-old daughter and punched him in the head repeatedly, killing him, authorities said.
Neither has been publicly identified.
Lavaca County Sheriff Micah Harmon says the girl was left inside the family's house during a social gathering, while other members of her family were tending to horses.
Harmon adds that the father returned to the house, caught the man in the act, and stopped him by striking him in the head several times, according to CNN.
The alleged abuser was pronounced dead on the scene, while the child was taken to a local hospital in Victoria, Texas, for examinations before being released.
The incident took place Saturday, June 9.
Harmon described the girl as, "OK, besides the obvious mental trauma."
The sheriff was asked whether they would press charges against the father; he responded:
"You have a right to defend your daughter. He acted in defense of his third person. Once the investigation is completed we will submit it to the district attorney who then submits it to the grand jury, who will decide if they will indict him."
He then described the dad as "very remorseful," regrettably stating that he didn't know the man was going to die.
Authorities were leaving the deceased man's name undisclosed, while they notified his closest relatives. Officials, on-the-spot, did not know if he had a prior criminal history.