On May 25, a 13-year-old middle school student in Noblesville, Indiana asked for permission to use the restroom. He returned with multiple guns and opened fire on his classmates. Female classmate Ella Whistler was shot seven times leaving her in critical condition. The suspect was brought down by a science teacher, Jason Seaman, who was also shot three times trying to protect his students. Both Seaman and Whistler remarkably survived the incident.
According to Fox 59, the teenage shooter was ordered to serve time in a juvenile detention center until his 18th birthday or until the court feels he is rehabilitated. For those who were present for the ordeal and are mentally scarred by the trauma, this sentence is not strong enough. However, because the teen was not tired as an adult, this was the most severe punishment a judge could hand down.
#UPDATE Indiana judge says 13-year-old boy lacked remorse for school shooting. Judge says he will remain the responsibility of the state juvenile court system until he is 18. pic.twitter.com/LhK9eJ4L7o
— CBS 13 News (@WGME) November 14, 2018
Hamilton Circuit Judge Paul A. Felix who handled the case does not believe that the teen feels remorse for the pain he has caused so many. Despite the 13-year-old having issued a written statement of apology, Felix feels his words do not match up to his actions. “As an adult, you would have faced decades behind bars. I read your statement of apology and I reject it… You said the right words, but what have you done to show remorse? You wanted devastation, a tragedy for the ages. Where do you get these ideas?” Felix said in court.
Meanwhile, Whistler’s family has said that she has no desire to ever see or be in the same room as the shooter again. The young girl can no longer play sports and requires assistance getting dressed and taking a shower. The Noblesville community has also lost its sense of safety that it held for many years. Prosecutors say the entire town will be afraid when the shooter is eventually released.
The suspect freely admitted to his crimes and claims he hopes that he is able to receive the treatment he needs and live a normal life.
Noblesville schools issued a public statement in wake of the court’s decision.
“The traumatic incidents of May 25, 2018 have forever changed the lives of our students, staff and community. Our sincerest hope is that this boy never hurts anyone again. We appreciate the court’s powerful comments and final decision, and recognize that it was appropriate within the limited confines of what state law will allow. We’re hopeful this will be a step towards closure and healing for the victims and our community overall.”