Rebecca J. Kavanagh @DrRJKavanagh @theappeal Media Relations Director, NYC Public Defender, Writer, @nyulaw, @sydneylawschool, @sydney_uni. Sydney ✈️ NYC. Views my own. Oct. 12, 2019 1 min read

A 9-year-old boy has been charged with 5 counts of 1st-degree murder after 3 adults & 2 children died in a fire in an Illinois trailer park home. He is the youngest child to be charged with murder in the recent history of the United States. 

It is unclear how prosecutors would be able to show the child had the intent to even set the home on fire, let alone have planned to set it on fire in advance with the intent to kill his family members, which is a required element to prove murder in the first degree.

According to the child's mother he was recently diagnosed with a form of schizophrenia, ADHD, and bipolar disorder.

Illinois is one of the 2/3 of US states with no minimum age for the criminal prosecution of children. 

You can follow @DrRJKavanagh.


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