Supreme Court to decide case of 16-year-old boy

On Wednesday, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court heard arguments in a case involving a 16-year-old boy charged with the murder of his father's pregnant fiancé back in 2009, when he was 11 years old. The pregnant woman was reportedly shot in the back of the head with the boy's youth shotgun. At the time of the incident, the boy's father was travelling to work. Other than her two daughters, 7 and 4 years of age, nobody else is thought to have been in the house.

As evidence, there was a shell casing found on the driveway between the house where the incident happened and the road where the boy was picked up by a school bus 45 minutes before. Earlier decisions in the case were conflicted on the issue of whether the youth was delinquent, the juvenile court saying he is and an appeals court saying he isn't.

The boy's attorney argues that the investigation of the murder was inadequate, and points out that police never even looked around the perimeter of the home for footprints. The only option to correct the situation, he says, is to grant a new trial.

When a young person gets into legal trouble, it is important to provide them with the best possible opportunity to learn from their mistakes and walk on a better path. The juvenile system is generally geared to do this. All young people facing legal trouble can benefit from an experienced attorney who is able to zealously advocate for their interests, but this is especially for those facing serious criminal charges.

Source:, "Pa. Supreme Court hears case of boy, 11, charged with pregnant woman's murder," March 12, 2014.

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