A Stevens County Superior Court judge sentenced a 10-year-old Colville boy to a minimum of three years in juvenile detention for conspiring to kill a classmate.
The boy cried when he told the judge: “I know that this is a bad thing that I’ve done.”
A teacher caught the boy and his 11-year-old friend trying to sneak a gun and knife into Fort Colville Elementary School. They planned to kill a girl because “she was really annoying,” court records state. The 10-year-old pleaded guilty to his charges last month.
The mother of the targeted girl described her daughter as funny and energetic. She loves horses and the color pink, she told the court. “If the boys had their way, she would have never grown up,” she said. “Those dreams would have been taken away.”
One of the boys intended to rape the girl before stabbing her, previous news reports said. A fellow student foiled the plot by telling a teacher he saw them with a knife.
The boy’s father apologized for the trouble his son had caused.
Judge Allen Nielson sentenced the boy to three to five years in a security facility.
Stevens County Prosecutor Tim Rasmussen said he’ll likely be booked into Echo Glen Children’s Center, a security facility for young offenders in Snoqualmie. The facility provides schooling and psychological services through the Department of Social and Health Services.
He’ll be a teenager by the time he’s released.
Although the standard sentencing is about two years, the intended victim’s mother didn’t believe that was long enough, Rasmussen said.
“It never escaped my mind that these are children,” Rasmussen said. “It is very troubling when children do things adults do – it leaves you questioning why.”
Corrections officers took the boy’s fingerprints and transported him back to Martin Hall Juvenile Center in Medical Lake.
Nielson ruled in March that the boys were competent to stand trial in juvenile court, even though Washington law presumes children ages 8 to 12 do not have the mental capacity to form the intent to commit crimes.
A handwritten plan detailed seven steps leading up to the planned killing, news reports said.
The 10-year-old boy told investigators he stole the gun from his older brother, who stole it from his late grandfather.