ST. GEORGE – Three teenage boys pleaded guilty to kidnapping charges in the case surrounding the kidnapping of a 14-year-old female.
Angela Adams, juvenile court prosecutor with the Washington County Attorney’s Office, said the three boys involved in the kidnapping of a 14-year-old female jogger in Santa Clara last May all pleaded guilty to kidnapping charges. However, none of the boys will face incarceration.
Adams said the 2nd degree felony kidnapping charges were dropped to 3rd degree felonies, and the boys were given suspended sentences of 30 days in detention and formal probation. The suspension comes with conditions attached. The boys had to enter a victim empathy treatment program and go through victim-offender mediation. They are also not to initiate any contact with the victim.
The suspended sentence – specifically time to be served in detention – came at the request of the victim and her family, Adams said. While incarceration would be avoided, the victim’s family and the prosecution were firm on the remainder of the sentencing recommendations, she said. The family wanted to boys to understand how the incident, which has been described as a prank gone too far, had affected the victim and continues to affect her.
Barring any future run-ins with the law, Adams said the boys would be able to have the kidnapping charges expunged from their records after they turned 18, though it is a process they will have to initiate themselves.
A hearing had originally been set for Sept. 28, but was cancelled due to a consolidation hearing held on Sept. 5 in which the three boys originally pleaded guilty and were given their suspended sentences.
Copyright St. George News, 2012, all rights reserved.