A 12-year-old boy could spend life in prison when he is tried as an adult for the murder of his two-year-old brother.
Cristian Fernandez is the youngest person ever to be charged with first-degree murder in the city of Jacksonville. Prosecutors say the pre-teen "acted with premeditation" when he allegedly shoved his two-year-old brother into a bookshelf, leaving the boy with a fractured skull and internal bleeding to the brain, CBS reports.
The younger boy, David, died two days after the March incident.
So, he SHOVED his brother. He did NOT try to kill him. He SHOVED him. Which of course kids do all the time.
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"Yes, I have compassion for Cristian Fernandez , but it's not my job to forgive, it's my job to follow the law," prosecutor Angela Corey recently told Fox News.
The prosecution did offer a plea deal that would have freed Fernandez on his twenty-first birthday.
Defense attorneys did not accept, however, on the basis that Fernandez would be forced to admit murder and likely serve the final three years of his sentence in an adult prison, according to the Florida Times-Union.
So, this is plea bargaining at work. Take the deal and admit to being a murderer, and you get nine years. Don't take the deal and lose at trial and you go to prison FOREVER.
A trial is set for Feb. 27, 2012.
Ferandez's mother, 25-year-old Biannela Susana, also faces aggravated manslaughter and culpable negligence charges relating to the incident. Prosecutors say Biannela, who gave birth to Fernandez when she was 12-years-old, first informed cops that her younger son injured himself in a fall.
So, when is too young to be tried as an adult? You can vote at age 18, serve your country at 18, but work at 16 and cannot drink until 21. Keep in mind that the latest brain research suggests your brain is not fully developed until on average about age 25 years.