Statements tossed in murders of West Point kids

Posted at 12:02 PM, Nov 21, 2013
and last updated 2013-11-21 20:49:28-05

FARMINGTON -- A judge has ruled that a 15-year-old boy's statements to Davis County Sheriff's deputies were given in violation of his constitutional rights, and therefore inadmissible in court.

The ruling came during a hearing Thursday for the teen, who is accused of stabbing his brothers to death inside their West Point home earlier this year. The boy's defense attorney told FOX 13 that Davis County Sheriff's deputies repeatedly questioned the boy, even after he invoked his right to have an attorney present.

"Two times they explained his rights under Miranda to him, asked him if he was willing to talk with them at that time, and two times he said no," Todd Utzinger said.

"Several other times he said he didn't want to talk, he didn't want to answer questions, he wanted to go to sleep. They woke him up twice to keep the interrogation going. In my view, it was a very egregious violation of his rights."

On Thursday, prosecutors stipulated to not use what was gathered in future court proceedings against the boy. The Davis County Attorney's Office declined to comment.

Davis County Sheriff Todd Richardson also had no comment, except to defend his deputies whom he said were properly trained in interrogation techniques.

FOX 13 is not naming the boy because he is charged as a juvenile. He is charged with murder, accused of stabbing his brothers to death inside their West Point home earlier this year. Prosecutors said their mother left him with 4-year-old Benji and 10-year-old Alex. Police said she returned to find their bodies, and the 15-year-old missing.

He was found hours later, walking down a road in Layton.

On Thursday, 2nd District Juvenile Court Judge Janice Frost asked the boy how he was doing while incarcerated in juvenile detention.

"Are you doing OK?" she asked him, as he sat next to his father and flanked by attorneys.

"Yep," he said.

The boy is scheduled to appear before Judge Frost again in February for an update hearing. The judge has not yet made a decision on a request by Davis County prosecutors to try him as an adult.