Chelsea Deffenbacher @ChelseaDeffenB
Final arguments were made on Tuesday in the waiver issued by a Eugene teenager charged with the murder of a homeless man.
Now Lane County Circuit Court Judge Suzanne Chanti must decide whether Jonathan Kirkpatrick should be tried as a teenager or as an adult for the murder and robbery of Ovid Neal III.
It is unknown how long it will take Chanti to decide whether Kirkpatrick will be tried as an adult. Kirkpatrick, 18, was 16 when he allegedly committed the crime with his then 15-year-old girlfriend, Jessica Simmons.
Both were initially charged as adults as the charges fell under Measure 11. However, due to Senate Act 1008, which came into force last month, both cases were automatically brought before a juvenile court. It was then up to the Lane County District Attorneys to request a waiver hearing to refer the cases back to an adult court. Prosecutors decided to bring Kirkpatrick to adult court but not Simmons.
The Kirkpatrick waiver hearing began on January 28th. There was no court on Monday and the trial ended on Tuesday. There is no jury in a waiver negotiation.
According to Attorney General Erik Hasselman, it will be the first hearing of its kind in Lane County – and she also believes in the state – since the new law went into effect.
Simmons earlier admitted guilt in a juvenile court and is awaiting conviction. She testified against Kirkpatrick last week.
Simmons told the court that Kirkpatrick killed Neal on October 3, 2018 in order to rob him. The couple got $ 11, a bit of marijuana, a gold-colored marijuana pipe, and some change, Simmons said. She also announced that the stone Neal was killed with was used the previous night to attack another person in the same area of downtown Eugene. The couple allegedly hid the rock under a grid around a city tree and retrieved it during the attack on Neal.