Weather Alerts 43 View »

Judge: Teen To Be Tried As Adult In Teacher Death

Judge: Teen To Be Tried As Adult In Teacher Death

CREATED Aug 12, 2014 - UPDATED: Aug 12, 2014

SALEM, Mass. (AP) - A judge has denied a request to have a teenager who formerly lived in Clarksville tried as a minor in the rape and murder of his math teacher in Massachusetts.

Former Danvers High School student Philip Chism is accused of killing teacher Colleen Ritzer in October. He was 14 at the time.

Salem Superior Court Judge Howard Whitehead heard arguments Tuesday from prosecutors and defense lawyers.

Defense attorney Denise Regan said the state law requiring minors 14 and over that are charged with murder to be tried as adults is "wrong and unconstitutional" because it violates their constitutional rights.

But Essex County Assistant District Attorney Kate MacDougall said Chism is accused of a "heinous and brutal" murder and is "amply protected" under the current law.

(Copyright 2014 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)