A Utah teen recently pleaded guilty to manslaughter in juvenile court after initially being charged with murder in adult court in Moab, Utah.
Setting the Scene
The teen shot and killed his mother’s boyfriend while the man slept. Authorities believe that the boyfriend had given the young man drugs and was prepping him to become a drug dealer, too. The teen wasn’t alone in his actions, however. Another young man has pleaded guilty to a second degree felony count of obstructing justice, also in juvenile court.
They Weren’t On their Own
Lest you think two 16-year-olds carried out the entire scheme on their own, they did have help when it came to attempting to conceal the crime and hiding the body. A few adults are still under investigation for their alleged roles in obstructing justice, particularly for suggesting how and where to dump the body. The teen’s mother has also pleaded guilty to obstructing justice and earlier this month was sentenced to spend 90 days in jail.
The prosecutor in this case explained that some of the reasons for the reduced charge of manslaughter in juvenile court include the teen’s age, previous head injuries that affect his cognitive abilities and the influence of and pressure from adults encouraging him to take action against the boyfriend.
Detention May be for the Best
Since the teen will be spending the next four years in a juvenile detention facility, hopefully he will receive the help and treatment he needs as well as develop the desire to make positive changes in his future life. Perhaps being away from negative adult influences will also add to the chances of his rehabilitation.
Manslaughter is a serious crime, whether you face the charge in juvenile court or district court. This is a perfect situation to show why it’s always beneficial to have an experienced Utah juvenile defense attorney on your child’s side in any legal matter—regardless of the severity of the charges.
Make the right move for your child and talk to a top Utah juvenile defense attorney today.