Jordan Brown, 14, has been found guilty of murdering Kenzie Houk, his father’s fiancée in 2009. John Hodge, Judge of Lawrence County, announced his verdict of guilty in a trial that included only members of both families and was closed to the media.
11-Year Old Brown Shot Defenseless Pregnant Houk While She was Asleep
On February 20th, 2009, Brown, 11 years old at the time, shot Kenzie Houk, 26, in the head while she was asleep in his father’s farmhouse at New Beaver. He boarded a school bus after throwing the used shell in the yard. Houk was almost 9 months pregnant with a baby boy.
Houk’s two daughters Jenessa and Adalynn were staying with the Brown family at the time of the incident. Brown was allegedly jealous over the attention that his father was paying to Houk’s daughters. Jordan was also angered over having to shift from his room which was to be converted to a baby room.
Supreme Court Appeals Moved Case to Juvenile Court
The case became well-known after attention was called to the improper laws concerning suspects charged with juvenile murder. Although Brown was charged with murder in the first degree of Houk and her unborn child as an adult, appeals were filed against the arrest. The first allowed Brown to be tried in juvenile court.
If Brown was tried in adult court, he would have been sentenced to a life sentence in jail without the possibility of parole. The second appeal was made by three newspapers requesting an open trial. The Supreme Court rejected this appeal and Hodge closed the case to the media.
What is Juvenile Delinquency
Juvenile delinquency deals with laws on crimes committed by young adults. Although, 18 years is the age of criminal responsibility in the US, some states have set a younger age limit. One of the main aims of juvenile justice is not punishment but rehabilitation.