12-year-old St. Louis boy charged with killing neighbor girl

Sunday, July 8, 2007

ST. LOUIS -- A 12-year-old boy has been accused of fatally stabbing his 13-year-old neighbor during a fight in front of the girl's home.

The 12-year-old boy was charged Friday with second-degree murder in juvenile court for allegedly stabbing Alexus Purtty late Thursday night outside her St. Louis home. State law allows juveniles as young as 12 to be certified to stand trial as adults, but prosecutors have not yet decided whether they will seek to try the boy as an adult.

Alexus' mother, Alecia Kimble, told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch that the fight began after the boy and his friends went by the family's house several times Thursday night, yelling profanities and bragging about stealing from the family's home last month. Kimble said the family's home was burglarized June 27 and that within days, people told her the boy was selling the family's property around the neighborhood.

Kimble said that she called police up to seven times Thursday night but that she never saw an officer. Alexus, her mother, grandmother, younger brothers and baby sister were on the family's porch that night.

Police said they have records of at least two calls after 10 p.m. Thursday in which the family reported a burglary suspect's whereabouts, but they never told dispatchers of any threats or fights. Police said officers twice went to the neighborhood but did not find the boy.

Finally, around 11:30 p.m., Alexus stepped off the porch and began arguing with the boys, according to family and police. The shouting match turned into shoving, witnesses told police, and eventually the 12-year-old went to his house as Alexus fought with the other boys.

The fight was breaking up when the 12-year-old returned with a steak knife and shoved it into Alexus' left side as she walked toward her home, family and police allege.

"I didn't even know she was stabbed until she fell and I saw the blood," said Kimble, who had been standing near her daughter.

The girl was taken to a hospital, where she died shortly after midnight.

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