A juvenile petition has been filed against 15-year-old Austin Thompson, the teenager who killed five people and injured two others Thursday evening in Raleigh, North Carolina.
The Wake County District Attorney, Lorrin Freeman, said her office filed a juvenile petition against the suspect Friday, and they will be seeking to try him as an adult.
“Juvenile petitions have been filed against the suspect. It would be out intent to seek to have those transferred to Superior Court and to proceed against him as an adult,” said Freeman.
On Thursday, around 5:30 p.m., police responded to Neuse River Greenway, Osprey Cove Drive, and Bay Harbor Drive about a 15-year-old white male shooting two people in a neighborhood’s streets and then going towards a walking trail where he shot three more people.
According to N.C. 501. Juvenile Prosecutions (Key Concepts):
- Juveniles between the age of 10 (or 6, prior to 12/1/21) and 18 (or 16, prior to 12/1/19) who commit an act which would be a criminal offense if committed by an adult are not charged with a crime in a traditional criminal court; instead, they are alleged to have committed a delinquent act, and a petition on the matter is heard in juvenile court.
- The purpose of juvenile court is not only to protect the public and prevent future offenses, but also to meet the needs of the juvenile and help him or her become a responsible and productive member of the community.
- Because juvenile proceedings are not true criminal prosecutions, the terminology and processes used in juvenile court are quite different – but there are many parallels between the basic concepts which apply in both courts.
- All juveniles are presumed to be indigent, and have both a statutory and constitutional right to be represented by counsel at all critical stages of the proceedings.
- Victims have a statutory right to be kept involved and informed regarding the progress of the juvenile case.