5th-Graders Will Stand Trial in Murder Plot
Judge says the two boys knew what they were doing
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Suggested by Ghille
Posted Mar 30, 2013 12:12 PM CDT
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(Newser) – A judge in northeast Washington state has found two boys, ages 10 and 11, competent to stand trial in juvenile court on a murder conspiracy charge. Prosecutors say the fifth-graders had a handwritten plan listing seven steps leading up to the planned killing of a female classmate. A county judge ruled yesterday that the boys understood the nature and consequences of their actions. They pleaded not guilty to conspiracy to commit murder, witness tampering, and juvenile possession of a firearm.

The boys were arrested Feb. 7 at Fort Colville Elementary School after a fourth-grader saw one playing with a knife on a school bus and told a school employee. A backpack search also turned up a .45-caliber semi-automatic pistol and ammunition. The Spokesman-Review reports the boys are being held on $100,000 bond each. Both a defense psychiatrist and a state psychologist say they present a danger to the community.