NEW CARLISLE, Ind. (AP) — A 14-year-old boy was charged with murder and child molestation Monday in the asphyxiation death of a 6-year-old girl in northern Indiana, prosecutors said.
St. Joseph County prosecutors filed a petition for delinquency in juvenile court against the teenager, the South Bend Tribune reported. Deputy Prosecutor Chris Fronk said the petition for delinquency alleges three counts against the teenager in the death of Grace Ross: murder, felony murder and child molesting.
Authorities are withholding the name of the boy because he has not been charged as an adult.
The state will consider the results of a psychological and competency evaluation before making a decision on whether to waive the case to adult court, Fronk said.
“In juvenile court there a lot of options that aren’t available in adult court. We want to make sure whatever course we take is well thought out, well reasoned and the best course to ensure we are seeking justice and protecting the community,” Fronk said.
Grace was found dead March 12 in New Carlisle, about 75 miles (120 kilometers) east of Chicago. about two hours after she was reported missing.