Prosecutors are seeking to try a 14-year-old boy as an adult in the slaying of a New Franklin couple.
The motion was announced during an arraignment hearing Monday morning in Summit County Juvenile Court.
The decision will come following future hearings before Judge Linda Tucci Teodosio. It is ultimately the judge’s discretion on whether the teen’s case should be transferred to adult common pleas court.
Jamal Vaughn of Akron pleaded not true, the juvenile equivalent of not guilty, to two counts of aggravated murder, aggravated robbery and aggravated burglary.
The Beacon Journal is naming the suspect due to the severity of the crimes he is accused of committing.
Vaughn remains in juvenile court custody.
Defense attorney Adam VanHo of Akron was appointed Monday to represent Vaughn. VanHo said he has not reviewed the charges and declined to comment in detail. A pretrial hearing is set for May 2.
“But I would ask the public not to make any rushes to judgment about this 14-year-old child as no evidence has been presented nor have any findings been made about his guilt or innocence,” VanHo said.
Vaughn is accused as an accomplice in the deaths of Jeffrey and Margaret “Peg” Schobert, whose bodies were found inside their Rex Lake Drive home last Tuesday morning. Police say the couple was bludgeoned with a sledgehammer.
Shawn Eric Ford Jr., 18, the boyfriend of the slain couple’s daughter, was arrested Thursday on charges of aggravated murder, aggravated robbery and aggravated burglary.
Prosecutors are expected to pursue the death penalty against Ford when the case is presented to a grand jury later this month.
New Franklin police Chief Dan Davidson said last week that Ford “is cooperating” with investigators.
Ford also has been charged with the March 23 stabbing of his girlfriend, 18-year-old Chelsea Schobert. She is recovering from her injuries.
Police believe the Schoberts were unhappy with Ford’s relationship with their daughter and blocked his efforts to visit her at the hospital.
Ford was awaiting sentencing on a robbery charge at the time of the slayings.
On Monday, New Franklin Mayor Al Bollas said residents in the community are stunned by the crime.
“The community is very shocked at this terrible tragedy, and we all pass along our deepest sympathy to the family and friends. We are extra proud and grateful for the tireless efforts of our Police Department,” Bollas said. “This is going to be a long healing process.”
Phil Trexler can be reached at 330-996-3717 or firstname.lastname@example.org.