INDIANAPOLIS – A judge has ordered a psychological evaluation for a teenager charged in a deadly February crime spree.
The evaluation will play a major role in whether the 15-year-old suspect will be charged as an adult. He’s currently charged as a juvenile in connection with a Feb. 13 crime spree that resulted in one man’s death on the south side and ended in a high-speed chase and crash in Brownsburg.
A Marion County juvenile judge ordered the evaluation during a Tuesday hearing.
Charges against the juvenile include murder and attempted murder. He’s also been charged with escape because he removed an electronic monitor that was meant to keep tabs on him.
A waiver hearing is set for June 3. The hearing, which is expected to last several days, will determine if the case will be waived from juvenile court to adult court.
Defense attorney Kenneth Riggins believes the evaluation will show that the teen is still able to be rehabilitated through the juvenile court system.
“This psychological evaluation is the stepping point, or the starting point, for them to make that sort of determination,” Riggins said.
Another teen, 17-year-old Sirquain Burr, has already been charged as an adult. He faces several counts, including murder, attempted murder and auto theft.
Police said the two were involved in the shooting death of John Yingling during a robbery on the morning of Feb. 13. Not long after that, police said they shot a man near Eagle Creek as he was walking his dog. Police also said the teens robbed a woman at gunpoint and attempted to rob another jogger that same morning. The stolen SUV they were riding in was spotted and police pursued the teens, resulting in a crash in Brownsburg.
Both teens were taken into custody after the crash.
In the week after the crime spree, several members of John Yingling’s family called for both teens to face the death penalty.
“It doesn’t matter if they’re kids or not,” said Yingling’s ex-wife Janet Yingling. “They made an adult choice. Therefore, they should pay the adult price.”
The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 2005 that sentencing juveniles to the death penalty was unconstitutional.