Should a 12 year-old boy be charged as an adult? Just by saying “12 year-old boy” it would indicate he is a child and not an adult, but investigators say he committed a very adult crime.
The news broke Wednesday night when agents with the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation said a 12 year old shot and killed his mother in the small town of Morrison, Oklahoma. Unfortunately we’ve seen a lot of these headlines recently. Kids killing people. This child is innocent until proven guilty, but just the concept of someone that young committing a crime of this magnitude would have once been thought impossible. The Noble county district attorney Mark L. Gibson says he’s never seen a case like this before. He told me he even called around the state asking other DA’s if they had any insight, and he can’t find anyone in Oklahoma who’s had to prosecute a 12 year old for first-degree murder. While he wouldn’t talk specifically about the case, Gibson did say he hasn’t made up his mind if he will move to have the boy certified as an adult. Gibson added the child’s mental status will weigh on the decision…family friends say he is a special needs child. Gibson has yet to see any official documentation supporting those claims. Personally, I think that will be the deciding factor.
Mental status aside, this case still presents a serious dilemma; Do you let a murderer out when he turns 18 or send a child to adult prison? Either way I would say this kid’s life is ruined. Gibson said he thinks there is a major hole in our state’s law because there is no option to hold over a dangerous juvenile offender once they reach 18 years of age. If the boy was 13 it would be automatic and there wouldn’t be a problem (except for the obvious child committing crime problem). Maybe lawmakers need to look into tweaking the state’s Youthful Offender Act.
Unfortunately I think we’re only going to see more of these types of crimes. I’m not blaming anyone or anything. I think we are all responsible for our own actions. However, it does seem like kids are growing up much faster than they used too..I’m not sure why.