Do you think a 12-year-old should be put on trial for murder??
Via NBC News:
Nearly two years after a neo-Nazi leader was gunned down at point-blank while sleeping on his sofa in Riverside, Calif., his son — who was 10 at the time of the killing — is going on trial for murder. Prosecutors want a judge hearing opening statements Tuesday to rule after the proceedings that the boy, now 12, murdered Jeff Hall, an out-of-work plumber who as regional leader of the National Socialist Movement headed rallies at a synagogue and a day labor site.
The boy told police he pulled a .357-Magnum from a closet and aimed it at Hall’s ear and pulled the trigger before running upstairs and hiding the weapon, according to court papers. “He decided, as he put it, it was time to end the father-son thing,” said Michael Soccio, chief deputy district attorney. “This child started at five years old being expelled from school for violence. … His violence started way before his dad ever joined any Nazi party.”
Soccio, citing a history of violent behavior including choking a teacher with a telephone cord, wants to keep him locked up as long as possible. If held responsible, the boy would become the youngest person currently in the custody of the state’s corrections department. The boy’s public defender, Matthew Hardy, did not immediately return calls for comment.
Hardy told the New York Times his client has neurological and psychological problems and was exposed to neo-Nazi “conditioning” at home. “He’s been conditioned to violence,” Hardy told the newspaper. “You have to ask yourself: Did this kid really know that this act was wrong based on all those things?”
The Associated Press is not identifying the boy — who is not charged as an adult — because of his age.
Hall, 32, who said he believed in a white breakaway nation, ran for a seat on the local water board in 2010 in a move that disturbed many residents in the recession-battered suburbs southeast of Los Angeles. The day before his death, he held a meeting of the neo-Nazi group at his home. Hall had previously taken the boy — his oldest of five children — on a U.S.-Mexico border patrol trip and showed him how to use a gun, according to papers filed by police against the boy’s stepmother alleging child endangerment and criminal storage of a gun.