Teens armed with AR-15 allegedly shot 2 people in attempted robbery, will be tried as adults
PLAQUEMINE- A pair of teens who just turned 16 and 17 years old this year will be tried as adults in Iberville Parish. Monday, a judge issued them each a $300,000 bond on attempted murder charges.
Korban Gillis, 16, and Laron Richard, 17, are accused of coaxing two adults to Plaquemine before shooting them.
"Once they arrived the two juveniles tried to rob them," Iberville Parish Sheriff Brett Stassi said. "When they balked at the robbery, he ordered the other one to fire on the vehicle, and they sprayed it with an assault rifle."
Stassi said once the kids were taken into custody, there was another major problem.
"These two young men were brought to the courthouse later, confessed to their actions," Stassi said. "We reached out to a juvenile facility to take these individuals. We called several... Ten or 12 different ones we've used and could not find one bed available."
The teens were sent home with an ankle monitor until District Attorney Tony Clayton decided they would be tried as adults.
"You cannot go home to momma after you've taken an AR-15, coaxed someone to come out at night to rob them and shoot them and try to kill them... Then go home to momma and eat corn flakes," Clayton said. "Ain't gonna happen."
Clayton said the problems with not having a juvenile facility to bring the teens to was a major problem.
"I'm asking the legislature to convene immediately to fix this juvenile problem," Clayton said. "How do you fix it? Give us a facility where we can pick them up and detach them from a situation, educate them or whatever you want us to do. But don't put an ankle bracelet on them and send them home."
Clayton said the situation involving juveniles causing trouble is not unique. Retaliation that can come as a result of the initial incident is a real concern.
"They don't have sympathy and compassion," Clayton said. "So, they will take out everyone in the house. So the sheriff and I are trying to protect everyone else, because these juveniles thought senseless to arm themselves with an assault weapon and spray another kid."
The two adults who were shot are expected to survive. However, one of the victims remains hospitalized as a result of their injuries. Right now, that victim is at risk of losing his arm after it was nearly blown off by the firearm.
Clayton said it's important to have a facility to house juvenile offenders that would educate and rehabilitate them before they are released back into society. Until that happens, he said the problems will continue.
"It is systemic," Clayton said. "We don't have the highest murder rate in America because we just happen to have a lot of spice in our food. We have it because the juveniles are contributing a large part to it, and that's my story and I'm sticking to it."