A fifteen-year-old driver has been charged with second-degree murder and felony hit and run after she ran down a jogger with a car. The teen allegedly not only rammed the jogger on purpose, but laughed about it to her friends.
On July 18, Greg Moore left his Maple Valley, Washington, home for an early morning jog, reports the Washington Post. His wife, Michelle, expected him to return from his workout but when he didn’t show, she went looking for him.
While Michelle searched, a bystander discovered Moore dead in a ditch near a church. He was hit so hard that he had a fractured skull, gashed calves and no shoes. A broken headlight cover was on the scene.
A surveillance camera caught footage of Moore jogging near the ditch, followed by a grey Toyota Camry and a silver Ford Escape going down the road in the same direction, reports the Seattle Times. The footage would lead to the owner of the Camry going to the police and having the vehicle inspected.
The Camry’s damage was consistent with Moore’s injuries, but the teen that was behind the wheel initially claimed that the damage was caused by someone hitting the car with a bat.
Eventually, the real story came to light, from the Washington Post:
According to charging documents obtained by the Kent Reporter, the teenager on July 18 took her godmother’s 2004 Toyota Camry without her permission and drove around with a friend as a passenger. Another friend followed in a separate car. Driving up behind Moore, the teenager told her friend in the Camry: “I’m going to scare him, I’m going to bump him,” the friend who rode in the car told investigators, according to the Reporter.
Traveling close to 50 mph, the teenager struck Moore with her car, according to the Reporter. The friend following in the other car heard a loud bang and saw an object fly into the air, according to investigators. The teenagers in the Camry did not stop until they had fled the scene, the friend said, but eventually they pulled over to assess the car’s damage.
Intentionally hitting a pedestrian at 50 mph is bad enough, but charging documents allege that the teens in the Camry laughed about how the jogger “flew over the car,” notes Seattle Times.
Prosecutors aren’t asking that the teen to be tried as an adult, reports Seattle Times:
“As heartbreaking as this case is, it’s also highly unlikely a juvenile court judge would allow this individual — a 15-year-old with no criminal history — to have her case handled in adult court,” Casey McNerthney, a spokesman for Prosecutor Dan Satterberg said in an email. “Even when juveniles are convicted as adults, Superior Court judges at sentencing can — and do in many cases — still follow the juvenile sentencing guidelines set by state lawmakers.”
The teen turned themselves in to police after the accusations of murder while attempting to commit the crime of second-degree assault and fleeing the scene. Michelle Moore denounced the decision and appeared in court to see the person that ran down her husband.