Junior high teen's attempted murder trial begins Monday

Last-minute filings affirm no insanity defense


A North Scott Junior High school student remains scheduled for trial Monday on attempted murder charges and his attorneys are asking a judge to forbid testimony from psychiatrists who examined him.

Court filings by defense attorney Melanie Thwing on July 2 asked the court to exclude testimony from the psychiatrists because the boy will not invoke an insanity or diminished capacity defense.

The filings said attorneys had previously discussed that defense, but had never presented any evidence. The July 2 motion stated defense attorneys will not claim it at trial.

His attorneys also filed a motion to exclude testimony or accounts that the boy, “appeared surprised the gun did not fire. Such testimony is improper opinion testimony and calls for speculation and therefore should not be admitted.”

The seventh-grader who turned 13 in April is charged with attempted murder after police say he brought a loaded handgun from his parents’ home to school Aug. 31, pointed it at a teacher and pulled the trigger.

Police said the gun’s safety was on, preventing it from firing. The teacher and a counselor ushered the boy to the counselor’s office, where he relinquished the weapon.

Some news accounts included police information from witnesses that the boy appeared surprised the gun did not fire.

The boy remains in custody at Scott County Juvenile Detention Center, where he was taken the day of the incident.

His mother told The NSP he was transferred to the Mary Davis Home in Galesburg for about three weeks earlier this year because of overcrowding at the Scott County Juvenile Detention Center.