This doesn't feel quite right

19 February 2009

Remember the eight-year-old boy that shot his father and his father's roomate? You remember, the one that the cops interrogated without the presence of a parent or lawyer? Apparently, he plead guilty today!

The now nine year old (who has remained anonymous due to his age) has allegedly come to the decision on his own. He has not been sentenced yet, but it has been decided that the courts will have say in his life until he is at least eighteen.

The Associated Press broke the story today, and you can check it out here.

This doesn't sit with me well. From the beginning I don't think things have been conducted properly. As I said, the boy's questioning was suspect from the start. Now, I wonder, do the proceedings seem a little off to anyone else but me? What judge would accept a nine-year-old boy's guilty plea? I am not sure that a child of that age, if he has a full understanding of the trial and all of its implications, should be able to submit a guilty plea. Where was his lawyer or his mother? Why was there a trial in the first place? It seems as though there should be a different way to handle something like this. Regardless of what anyone else says, I don't think you can convict a nine year old because it is nearly impossible that he or she understands the affects of his or her actions.

This entire debacle is very suspect to me. What kinds of precedents will this set?

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