Archive for Monday, January 6, 1992

TRIAL AS AN ADULT

January 6, 1992

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Another senseless killing has occurred in the Kansas City area, and it appears the 17-year-old suspect in the case may be tried as an adult because of the magnitude of the crime.

The suspect is accused of stabbing to death a high school youth with whom he worked, apparently to steal the victim's car. The brutality in the case is appalling to most of us, and it is that aspect along with the apparent premeditation in the incident that have people calling for a full-fledged adult trial.

But since the suspect is 17 years old (18 is the cutoff age for ``adults''), there are those who want ``juvenile'' treatment for the defendant.

Yet such sentiment seems to be lessening in a society where youngsters, some even in the 10-12 age range, are committing heinous crimes in shocking numbers. Age 18 no longer is any more indicative of adult/non-adult status than 21 once was considered. People acquire too much too fast anymore, and that includes the desire, imagination and capability to commit major crimes that are by no means juvenile in nature.

There seems to be every good reason to try the defendant in the recent Kansas City murder case as an adult, no matter what his age on the calendar.

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