MILWAUKEE - The teen accused in a shooting that followed Milwaukee's 2023 Juneteenth celebration – wounding six people – will face charges as an adult.
A judge on Tuesday, Feb. 6 agreed to waive the case to adult court, something prosecutors had been pushing for since June of last year. The accused shooter was 15 years old at the time.
Juvenile court is meant to keep kids out of the adult system, helping to connect them with resources or keep them out of trouble. But prosecutors said after the shooting they had "little confidence" juvenile probation can protect the public in this case.
Court filings stated last year that the accused shooter had shown "an absolute refusal to be rehabilitated...and a continued desire to carry and use weapons to victimize others, even when released on pending weapons charges."
Wauwatosa police were called to a McDonald's on Easter 2023 and arrested five people – including the teen accused in the Juneteenth shooting. He was later charged with multiple firearm offenses, and prosecutors wanted him detained in that case.
When he was 13 years old, a judge found the teen to be a felon for being a main actor in a series of armed robberies – but he wasn't kept in custody. Prosecutors said it was because of juvenile probation's "glowing record" of past successes. He was instead put on GPS monitoring and told to have a juvenile probation-approved adult with him.
Following Milwaukee's Juneteenth celebrations, prosecutors said the boy didn't have an adult with him and was carrying a gun – again – when he "got into a brawl," pulled out a gun and fired. That shooting wounded six people. Prosecutors said two of them were seriously hurt and as many as five will suffer "life-long consequences."