March 29, 2013 in City

Colville boys, 10 and 11, will stand trial in murder conspiracy

By The Spokesman-Review
 
Colin Mulvany photo

Parent Christy Gorst reacts at a public forum Wednesday while reading on her phone a news account detailing an alleged plot by two fifth-graders to kill classmates at Fort Colville Elementary School.
(Full-size photo)

A Stevens County judge has ruled that two boys, ages 10 and 11, are competent to stand trial in juvenile court for first-degree conspiracy to murder a female classmate.

Prosecutor Tim Rasmussen described the details in the conspiracy as “salacious.” A handwritten plan listing seven steps leading up to the planned killing was submitted as evidence during the mental capacity hearing on Friday in Colville.

One of the boys intended to rape the girl before stabbing her, he said.

Rasmussen said the boy described rape as a display of strength and power — not sex.

The judge determined the boys understood the nature of their actions and the consequences. They each pleaded not guilty.

A status hearing is scheduled for April 8, and Rasmussen expects the defense to file a motion to suppress evidence like the discovery of the intended murder weapons in one of the boys’ backpack at Fort Colville Elementary School.

The plot was foiled by a fellow student, who reported seeing a knife to a teacher.

A handgun found in the backpack was reportedly stolen from one of the boy’s siblings.

The boys will be kept in custody with a $100,000 bond each because both a psychiatrist with the defense and a state psychologist said the children present a danger to the community.

Today’s mental capacity hearing was the first in Stevens County for the past several years, said Rasmussen, who has been prosecutor for six years. He also said there have been very few cases in the state of Washington where boys at this age have been charged with crimes like this.

The case is expected to go to trial in juvenile court before the end of April.


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