In Oregon, an 11-year-old boy is being arraigned on allegations of first- and second-degree robbery and unlawful use of a firearm. His accomplice was a 7-year-old boy.
The Oregonian reports:
Police said the 11-year-old was armed with a loaded .22-caliber derringer and threatened Amy Garrett, 22, in her pickup while she was parked at Freedom Foursquare Church about noon Saturday. Garrett said the 11-year-old and a 7-year-old boy, carrying a backpack with bullets, demanded her pickup, then money and her phone.
The boy’s father was charged with a relatively new law that makes it a crime to leave a gun unsecured and within reach of a child. The father is a convicted felon, and he has had two child neglect and abuse complaints filed against him in the last year. The 11-year-old boy and his two younger siblings were taken into protective custody.
A neighbor claimed to have called police several times over the past 18 months with complaints about vandalism and trespassing involving the then 10-year-old boy. The young age of the attempted carjacker and his relatively long history of contact with police brings to mind the case of Nathaniel Abraham; Abraham was given a real opportunity when he was sentenced as a juvenile; unfortunately, he seems to be struggling in prison as an adult.
But back to the current situation with an 11-year-old boy facing first- and second-degree robbery and weapons charges. What a strange and sad case! What in the world would an 11-year-old do if his victim had surrendered her vehicle? Would he have attempted to drive it off? To where and to what end? And, what are the circumstances of his 7-year-old accomplice? The boys are not related and police have not take action against the 7-year-old.
What do you think should be done in this case? What would be an appropriate response?
Edit, Dec. 13: here is a follow up to this story.