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Milwaukee officials want 16-year-old tried in adult court

Milwaukee officials want 16-year-old tried in adult court

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MILWAUKEE - Authorities said Friday they will seek an adult trial for a 16-year-old who told them he fatally shot a woman he robbed because "she had an attitude."

The shotgun slaying of Christine Schweiger, 35, outside a Milwaukee restaurant Tuesday was witnessed by her 10-year-old daughter, Monique Woodard, who was standing nearby.

Two youths were taken into custody Wednesday by authorities.

The 16-year-old and a 15-year-old boy, who allegedly furnished the shotgun and loaded it, were charged in a delinquency petition with first-degree intentional homicide, armed robbery, attempted armed robbery and possesion of a short-barreled shotgun.

The crime is "offensive to even the most callous person in our community," Assistant District Attorney Mario S. Spalatin told Children's Court Judge Russell W. Stamper.

Stamper ordered both boys held in detention until their next hearing Wednesday.

Spalatin said authorities would seek to have Children's Court waive jurisdiction in the 16-year-old's case. He said authorities were still trying to decide whether to do the same with the 15-year-old.

The murder left Milwaukee Police Chief Philip Arreola pondering the condition of young people and what they are learning.

"What about self-respect, a respect for others and self-restraint?" Arreola asked. "In this case the gun is what made the offender think he was more powerful, the "big man.' "

Rep. Rosemary Potter, D-Milwaukee, said the confidentiality privilege for juvenile offenders who commit violent crimes should be changed.

"I believe that a 16-year-old who blows a woman's head off with a shotgun does not deserve the blanket of protection that concealing his identity provides," Potter said.

In a juvenile petition, the 16-year-old told police he shot Schweiger after he asked for her money. He said she responded by saying, "I don't have any money." The boy said the way she said it "was with an attitude as if she thought he was joking."

The boy told police he then thought: "I'm a big man, I got the gun, why does she have this attitude?" the petition said.


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