On Wednesday afternoon, the 14-year-old child suspected of shooting and killing another child at Ingraham High School Tuesday morning waived his first appearance in juvenile court. In his absence, the judge determined probable cause for three separate charges brought forth by the prosecution: one count of murder in the first degree, one count of unlawful possession of a firearm in the second degree, and one count of possession of a dangerous weapon on school property. The judge also determined that the suspect would be held in detention.
More details about what happened Tuesday morning will come Monday, when police will release additional documents that allow the court to make a charging decision and hold a second appearance on Nov 15.
The court also found probable cause for two offenses the prosecution brought forward against a 15-year-old who they claimed police found with the suspected shooter on a city bus shortly after the killing. Police said they found a gun in the 15-year-old’s backpack, which they believe the other child used in the attack.
Given that the police are still investigating the case, the prosecution asked the court to hold the kid in detention on suspicion of possession of an unlawful firearm in the second degree and rendering criminal assistance in the first degree.
The 15-year-old asked the judge to stay with his parents instead of going to jail despite possible involvement in the crime, and the defense clarified that the 15 year-old was not under investigation for the shooting itself. The lawyer argued that the boy should stay with his parents, who are home all day and can watch him as a complement to electronic monitoring.
The defense also pointed to a score determined by juvenile probation workers that assesses the risk someone poses if released. That risk is based on the nature of the crime, the suspect's age, and other social factors. The 15-year-old scored low enough that judges would typically let him go home, mostly because he’s never been in detention before. His parents echoed the sentiment, saying that he was a good kid who got caught up with the wrong crowd after a recent move from Auburn.
Ultimately, the judge ruled to keep him in detention despite the low score, which sometimes gets thrown out the window in more serious cases. She assured the child’s parents that her decision is only temporary and for the short-term safety of the public.