Yesterday, Douglas County District Judge Jeffrey Holmes ruled that 16-year-old Alec McKinney will be tried as an adult. This came after the hearings in which McKinney’s defense tried portraying the teen as having a traumatic home life who also heard voices telling him to hurt others. Judge Holmes acknowledged McKinney’s harsh upbringing but also acknowledged how McKinney allegedly manipulated those who tried to help him.
“Past performance does not provide persuasive evidence that McKinney will take advantage of services that are furnished,” the judge wrote. “He frequently failed to attend classes at the STEM school, he did not disclose the extent of his drug usage to his mental health providers, nor was he candid and forthcoming about matters related to his mental health to his mother or to his service providers.”
“Based on the totality of the evidence before it, the Court finds that it is has not been proved that the juvenile and the community would be better served by transferring this case to juvenile court,” Holmes wrote.
If McKinney was to be tried in juvenile court the most he could receive is seven years. Now, McKinney is facing a sentence of 40 years to life. The other suspect, Devon Erickson, was 18 at the time of the shooting and is facing a potential death sentence, however, Colorado has only executed one person since the death penalty was reinstated in 1977.