Teen's hate-crime murder trial delayed

Feb. 15, 2011 at 6:49 PM
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OXNARD, Calif., Feb. 15 (UPI) -- The trial of a California teen accused of killing a classmate was delayed so defense lawyers can obtain release of the victim's juvenile records.

The trial of Brandon McInerney, who at 15 years old allegedly killed his classmate Larry King, also 15, execution style in a class at E.O. Green School in Oxnard Feb. 12, 2008, was pushed back to May 2, the Ventura County Star reported Monday.

The original trial date was March 15. Judge Charles Campbell of the Ventura County Superior Court set an April 4 hearing so the defense can determine the case's status and tell whether they will be ready for the new trial date.

Prosecutors have offered a plea deal that includes a sentence of 25 years to life if McInerney pleads guilty to first-degree murder and the hate-crime charge.

McInerney faces up to 53 years to life in prison if he is convicted of all charges in adult court.

King said he was gay, and McInerney is charged with a hate crime because he allegedly had subscribed to white supremacist views. An expert witness testified in a 2009 preliminary hearing that white supremacists consider gays to be enemies of the white race.

"I'm really shocked that the judge has allowed it to drag on for so long. It frustrates us. It tears on us emotionally. We'd like to see things finally get resolved so we can get some closure and justice for our son," said King's father, Greg King.

"We're trying to get as much information that we can so we can fully understand what was going on, not only between these boys, but between Larry King and other children," said defense lawyer Scott Wippert, adding he won't know if the records are relevant to the case until he reads them.

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