Prom Date Rejection

***READER DISCRETION IS ADVISED***

Posts about real school tragedy, crime and/or events can be upsetting.

Chalk words on walkway "Prom With Me?"BLOG POST #62: This week, I’m sharing research on a specific criminal case involving two high school students.

High school can be difficult for many teenagers. Mustering the courage needed to ask a girl on a date can cause a boy to break out in hives.

It’s no doubt scary for a teenage boy to ask a girl he’s been pining for to accompany him to the high school prom. Both possible rejection and possible acceptance bring stressful consequences. If rejected—fear of humiliation. If accepted—fear of performance.

It was the morning of prom, surveillance footage showed the two students talking and walking in a hallway that led them to a stairwell. Both students entered the stairwell together and thirty seconds later one was gasping to life.

A teacher found the two students in the stairwell. The male student was bloody and on top of the female student who had suffered multiple stab wounds to her torso and neck. The female student did not survive the attack.

The male student, 17-years-old boy was arrested and charged with murder. The prosecution argued the motive was rejection. The male student asked the female student to be his date for the junior prom and was rejected. Reports allege friends of the teen murderer said he’d told them he wouldn’t mind if the female student “was dead or hit by a bus.”

The defense rejected the claim that the motive was rejection. It was reported the defense held firm the teen murderer’s mental health at the time of the crime was to blame.

The male student eventually pleaded guilty rather than move forward with a trial. He faced a possibility of 60-years in prison. Because of a juvenile justice law that requires a review of juvenile cases with a possible long sentence, he was sentenced to 25-years.

The teen murderer will remain in a youth institution until 2019 when he turns 22, and then be moved to an adult facility. He will be eligible for parole after a total of 13-years have been served.

The sentencing judge assured the family and friends of the victim that parole is not a given, it’s a possibility. The judge also told the victim’s mother her victim-impact statement was “one of the most memorable” he’d heard in his career and that her words “will never be forgotten.”

The judge said to the teenager murderer, “She wanted to be your friend.”

Worth Mentioning: The mother of the victim has filed a complaint in court against the School District Board of Education, the city, and the parents of the teen murderer. Her claim is that all three parties were made aware of the teen murderer’s instability and potential to harm himself and/or others and the parties did nothing with that knowledge. The outcome of this complaint is yet to be determined.

The complaint is very interesting. You can read the 17-page document here: Court Complaint

What are your thoughts about this case? Join the conversation on the website. We talk about the sensitive subject of crimes occurring at or connected to schools. Your relevant comments are always welcome on the Research Blog.

Do you know of a school crime you’d like to share? Email me so we can discuss the details.

Thanks for reading and caring about children!

-Robin

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