A 14-year-old Southern California boy has pleaded not guilty to the murder of his gay classmate.
Brandon McInerney entered the plea in Ventura County Superior Court on Thursday. McInerney is charged as an adult with first degree murder and a hate crime for the Feb. 12 fatal shooting of 15-year-old Larry King at their junior high school in Oxnard.
King sometimes wore makeup and told friends he was gay.
Defense attorney William Quest said in court that the charges are "essentially a death sentence" for McInerney, and wants the boy tried on the lesser charge of manslaughter.
McInerney faces 51 years to life without the possibility of parole if convicted.
In a weary world of endless US military interventions, sanctions, trade tariffs and chaos, let’s pause and take stock of the shining house on the hill