RAVENNA — A 13-year-old found delinquent in the shooting death of his 11-year-old brother in Streetsboro in April will likely be held in a juvenile detention center until he is 21 years old.
What is not clear is whether the boy will also face an adult sentence if he breaks a set of criteria while serving his juvenile disposition, a term similar to a sentencing in adult court.
Tuesday was the first day of a hearing to be conducted over several days this week to determine his fate. The Beacon Journal is not naming the boy because of his age.
Portage County Juvenile Court Judge Bob Berger told family members and lawyers in the courtroom on Tuesday that this situation was unique in Portage County. The law affecting the case has been in place only since 2005 and has not been previously used in the county.
“This is completely unique and bizarre,” he told reporters before the hearing started.
A psychologist and a person who works at the Portage-Geauga County Juvenile Detention Center testified Tuesday. A full list of witnesses was not available.
The psychologist, Dr. Amy Thomas, told the court Tuesday that the teen suffers from multiple psychological disorders, including paranoia, reactive attachment disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder and conduct disorder. Another psychologist had also diagnosed the teen with schizophrenia, she said, though she added she didn’t feel comfortable making that determination.
Thomas said the boy's diagnosis was rooted in abuse he suffered as a child.
The teen and his brother were adopted when the older boy was 2 years old, she testified. Court records indicate the parents filed for divorce in 2012.
The father remarried in August 2017, court records indicate.
The teen was found delinquent, a finding similar to guilty in adult court, in October. He is accused of shooting and killing his 11-year-old brother on Alden Drive in Streetsboro in April 2018. Police said the boy took a .357 Magnum from his grandparents’ home by dismantling part of a locked cabinet.
The shooting occurred in the family's home while an adult family friend was baby-sitting the boys while their parents were away.
The baby sitter reported that she ran to the younger boy's room after hearing a pop. She found him bleeding through a hole in his neck, according to police reports. She performed CPR on the bleeding child until he was transported by ambulance to University Hospitals Portage Medical Center in Ravenna, where he was pronounced dead.
The teen fled, but was later found in the area. He has been held in the Portage-Geauga County Juvenile Detention Center since the incident.
Contact reporter Eileen McClory at firstname.lastname@example.org or @Eileen_McClory.