Tulsa Judge Rules Michael Bever To Be Tried As An Adult

Monday, October 12th 2015, 10:26 am
By: News On 6

A Tulsa County judge denied a defense motion for 16-year-old Michael Bever to be tried as a juvenile.  

Michael and his 18-year-old brother Robert Bever are charged with first-degree murder in the July deaths of their family members at their Broken Arrow home.

The judge announced her decision Monday morning.

Last Friday, lawyers for the Bever brothers argued that Michael Bever is too young to be tried as an adult.

10/9/2015 Related Story: Bever Attorney Argues Trying 16 Year Old As Adult Is 'Unconstitutional'

State law requires the state to treat anyone 15 to 17 years old charged with first-degree murder as an adult. Michael Bever's attorney argued that is unconstitutional.  

Special Coverage: Bever Family Murders

The District Attorney believes that law is correct.  

"Anybody who's gonna commit first degree murder, is gonna be treated as an adult," said Tulsa County DA Steve Kunzweiler.  

Michael Bever's attorney says the law wouldn't let Bever vote or drink or a number of other things because teenagers aren't capable of making the same decisions as adults.  He says Bever should have the option of treatment, not be thrown away forever, if convicted.

"It's undisputable that a 16 year old's frontal brain development is not the same as an adult," said defense attorney Rob Nigh.  

The preliminary hearing is set for January, where people will have to testify about what happened that night. But, the defense attorney says that may not be enough time because he plans to appeal this case all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court.