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dnice35

Incompetent prosecutor.

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PENSACOLA, Fla. — Two teenage brothers pleaded guilty to third-degree murder and arson in the slaying of their father Thursday, ending an unusual case that saw contradictory prosecutions of the boys and a family friend for the killing.

Derek and Alex King accepted the plea agreement following a weeklong mediation. Derek King was sentenced to eight years in prison, his brother Alex was sentenced to seven years.

The case had drawn widespread attention in part because prosecutors presented evidence at one trial that a family friend, Ricky Chavis, a convicted child molester, had killed the father and at the boys' trial argued that they did it.

Circuit Judge Frank Bell took the unusual step of ordering mediation in an effort to settle the case after throwing out the second-degree murder convictions of Alex, 13, and Derek, 14.

Mediator Bill Eddins presented the agreement to Bell after a final negotiating session Wednesday with the prosecutor and defense lawyers.

The boys had been convicted in September of arson and second-degree murder without a weapon in the November 2001 death of their father, Terry King.

The jury came to that conclusion although King, 40, was fatally bludgeoned with an aluminum baseball bat. He was killed as he slept in a recliner at his home in nearby Cantonment. The house then was set on fire.

Jurors later said they believed that Chavis, 41, of Pensacola, wielded the bat. They said they still found the King boys guilty of second-degree murder without a weapon because they admitted letting Chavis in the house.

But a separate jury earlier acquitted Chavis of first-degree murder. He remains jailed awaiting trial on other charges of accessory after the fact to murder, evidence tampering and sexually molesting Alex.

Assistant State Attorney David Rimmer had argued that the boys, 12 and 13 when the crime was committed, were guilty of first-degree premeditated murder based largely on detailed confessions they gave police but later recanted.

In the confessions, Derek admitted swinging the bat while Alex said he had urged his brother to kill their father because they were afraid of being punished for running away from home.

If the mediation had failed, Bell said he would order a retrial, although the state could have appealed that decision. One of the factors Bell cited for reversing the convictions was the state's presentation of conflicting evidence of who wielded the bat in each trial.

The King boys' mother, Kelly Marino, had declined comment earlier in the day when Eddins announced that a plea deal had been reached. She was with two Miami lawyers hired by comedian Rosie O'Donnell whom she wanted to represent the boys.

Those attorneys tried to have the boys declared incompetent, but Bell said they had no standing in the case.

The victim's brother, Greg King, also refused comment.

The case has become a national rallying point for child advocates who oppose prosecuting juveniles as adults. It is the latest in a series of high-profile murder trials of children in Florida, which leads the nation in adult prosecution of juveniles.

Nathaniel Brazill was 13 in May 2000 when he fatally shot Lake Worth teacher Barry Grunow. He was convicted of second-degree murder and sentenced to 28 years in prison.

Also in May 2000, John Silva, of Interlachen, was 15 when he kidnapped and strangled 12-year-old neighbor Jerry Lee Alleys Jr. and then stuffed his body in a dry septic tank. He is serving life without parole for first-degree murder.

Lionel Tate, then 12, body-slammed 6-year-old Tiffany Eunick at his Broward County home in July 1999. He also was convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to life without parole.

The Florida Legislature has refused to change laws allowing only juvenile or adult penalties for young killers. Critics say that leads to penalties that are too soft or too harsh. Many states provide for mixed juvenile and adult sentences.

I hope these two little shits get ass raped in jail And can someone tell me where the fuck they got this prosecutor???

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