June 5, 2012
THOMAS J. SHEERAN
CLEVELAND — A 17-year-old boy has been charged with three counts of aggravated murder in the school shooting deaths of three students and the wounding of three others, according to an indictment released Tuesday.
The indictment was returned by a Geauga County grand jury against T.J. Lane in the Feb. 27 attack at Chardon High School east of Cleveland.
A judge ruled last month that Lane must be tried as an adult. Lane could face life in prison if convicted.
He was indicted on three counts of aggravated murder, two counts of attempted aggravated murder and one count of felonious assault. No motive has been established.
One of Lane’s attorneys, Mark DeVan, said there would be no comment.
Lane’s arraignment was scheduled for Friday in Chardon. Killed in the attacks were Demetrius Hewlin, 16, Russell King Jr., 17, and Daniel Parmertor, 16.
Minors aren’t eligible for the death penalty in Ohio. Had his case been routed to juvenile court, the maximum possible penalty would have kept him jailed until he turned 21.
The judge who sent the case to adult felony court rejected a defense request to release Lane on a $500,000 bond and said Lane would pose a risk to flee and a safety risk to the community.
A psychiatrist who examined Lane testified earlier that that Lane sometimes loses touch with reality and suffers from hallucinations, psychosis and fantasies.
But Dr. Phillip Resnick said none of the symptoms detailed in a mental evaluation would prevent Lane from understanding the case against him and helping in his defense.
Under a new state law, a child can be found competent only if he or she is able to grasp the seriousness of the charges and understand the proceedings.
Resnick said Lane also has experienced migraine headaches, a narrow range of emotions and withdrawing from people.
Lane attended an alternative school for students who haven’t done well in traditional schools; he had been at Chardon waiting for a bus.
Prosecutor David Joyce said Lane has admitted taking a .22-caliber pistol and a knife to the high school and firing 10 shots at a group of students sitting at a cafeteria table at the start of the school day.