Teens had received psychiatric care — (The Pantagraph)

SSRI Ed note: Mother who thinks "manic depression" is hereditary allows her 13-yr old to take antidepressants, attempts suicide, commits murder with a friend.

Original article no longer available

The Pantagraph, (Bloomington, IL)


April 16, 1993

Both Iowa teen-agers charged with attempting to murder two state police officers early yesterday had received in-patient psychiatric care earlier this year for depression.

While testimony at a juvenile detention hearing in Livingston County yesterday might not explain why a 13-year-old is alleged to have fired at least 10 shots at two state police cars while his 14-year-old companion led police on a 26-mile chase, it did shed some light on the youngsters’ lives.

After listening to more than an hour of testimony, Judge Harold Frobish ordered both youths to a juvenile detention center in Galesburg. They will appear in court again Thursday for a hearing on a motion by prosecutors to try them as adults.

If the youths are tried as juveniles the maximum sentence they could receive would be placement in a state juvenile corrections facility until they turn 21. If they are tried as adults and convicted of attempted murder they would be sentenced to from 20 to 40 years in prison. They would serve the sentence in a juvenile facility until being transferred to an adult prison at 17.

The two, who were shackled at the ankles, showed little emotion during the court proceeding, which was closed to everyone except relatives, attorneys and the media.

Neither of the Mount Pleasant, Iowa, teens had run away before or been charged with criminal activity, relatives said during the hearing.

The 13-year-old’s mother said her son suffers from manic depression as a result of a hereditary condition.

He had been placed on medication while receiving in-patient treatment from Dec. 27 to Feb. 8, she said, adding he began refusing to take the medication about one week ago.

The teen-ager has been in counseling for 2 years and had attempted suicide on two occasions, she said, adding he began skipping school shortly after he stopped taking the medication.

The 14-year-old’s grandmother, who has been his legal guardian for 10 years, said her grandson had been depressed recently after learning the identity of his natural father, who also lives in Mount Pleasant. He spent one week on a psychiatric floor at an Iowa hospital in mid-March.

Edition: FIRST
Section: NEWS
Page: A12
Record Number: 0F21D6A12A6B8FEA
Copyright (c) 1993, 2002 Pantagraph Publishing Co.
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