WY Supreme Court Rules Against Gillette Teen Who Planned To Open Fire At Junior High School

Wyoming’s highest court says the state was correct in its prosecution of a Gillette teen who had planned to open fire at the Junior High School he attended.

The Wyoming Supreme Court says state prosecutors did the right thing when they charged then 14-year old eighth grader Dale Warner as an adult.

In middle November 2018, Warner took a loaded gun with extra bullets to Sage Valley Junior High School, and had planned to shoot students, teachers, and principals.

Warner was placed in the foster care system when he was about three days old and a few days before the incident, his biological father had died.

He had mentioned to several classmates what he was going to, and one of them reported those plans to school officials, who were able to stop Warner from executing his plan.

Warner pleaded guilty to 1 count of assault and 1 count of possession of a deadly weapon with unlawful intent.

He also pleaded no contest to 1 count of aggravated assault and battery.

In the appeal, representatives from the state public defender’s office argued that the district court should not have denied a request to have the case transferred to juvenile court.

The office said the district court abused its discretion in weighing the factors, when it denied the transfer request, because the court placed undue weight on the seriousness of the alleged offense.

In its ruling, the Wyoming Supreme Court disagreed with the State Public Defender’s office, saying the district court thoughtfully analyzed and weighed all applicable factors, when it denied the transfer request.

Warner is currently serving 12-to-20 years in prison.

Click here to read the Wyoming Supreme Court’s ruling.

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