Teen guilty of murder when he was 13 sentenced to 63 years

A teenager who was 13 when accused of killing another youth in northern Indiana was sentenced Thursday to 63 years in prison.

Alphonso James III, now 16, was convicted of murder in the death of 18-year-old Jaren Minies in Elkhart on Sept. 12, 2018. Minies was shot multiple times during a dispute over a gun, money and a video game system. He died within minutes despite efforts by witnesses to rush him to a hospital.

Elkhart Circuit Judge Michael Christofeno found James guilty in a bench trial last year.

Christofeno sentenced James to the 55-year advisory prison term for murder plus eight years for aggravating circumstances. He denied a motion from James’s attorney to sentence the teen within the juvenile justice system, The Elkhart Truth reported.

James testified during his trial, saying the shooting was in self-defense. He said Minies had aimed a gun at him.  (AP)

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