- Associated Press - Friday, September 12, 2014

MILWAUKEE (AP) - A 13-year-old Racine boy was charged this week with stabbing and injuring an 11-year-old girl, becoming the third Wisconsin juvenile in four months to be charged as an adult in a stabbing.

The victim told investigators that the boy accused her of “messing” with his girlfriend and then stabbed her several times with a pocket knife Monday, according to a criminal complaint. She needed stitches to close wounds to her upper left arm, left forearm and upper left chest.

The boy was charged Thursday with attempted first-degree intentional homicide. The charge carries a maximum prison sentence of 40 years. A judge set a cash bond of $50,000 and set a preliminary hearing for Wednesday.

The teen was charged in adult court because Wisconsin law requires that anyone over the age of 10 be charged as an adult if accused of certain serious crimes. Young offenders can try to have their cases moved to juvenile court, where the penalties are less severe and the treatment options are more age-specific, by asking a judge to grant what’s called a reverse waiver.

The Racine teen’s public defender, Jamie McClendon, did not immediately return a message Friday asking whether she planned to seek a reverse waiver. The Associated Press isn’t naming the boy as long as there’s a chance his case will be moved to juvenile court.

The boy told investigators he didn’t know the girl or the friends who were with her, according to the criminal complaint. But the wounded girl told police she believed the stabbing was related to bullying she experienced at school last year.

Two witnesses, a boy walking with the suspect and a girl who was with the victim, each said the teen boy was arguing with the victim and the two agreed to fight, the complaint said. They said the boy stabbed her three times and fled.

The altercation came less than four months after two 12-year-old girls stabbed and nearly killed a classmate in Waukesha, according to police. The girls told investigators they were hoping to curry favor with a fictional horror character named Slender Man, according to the criminal complaint charging them with being party to attempted first-degree intentional homicide.

The two defense attorneys in their cases have said they plan to seek reverse waivers for the girls. But their cases haven’t yet progressed to that point, as the judge is still weighing issues related to the girls’ mental competence.

___

Dinesh Ramde can be reached at dramde@ap.org.

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