Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: Cristian Fernandez has Public Defender Replaced with Private Attorney

Via Scoop.itJuvenile Justice

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Murder suspect Cristian Fernandez will have private counsel during his trial, a judge ruled today. Judge Mallory Cooper today granted a motion in the Fernandez trial filed by his guardian ad litem to replace the public defender with private counsel. The city’s youngest murder suspect, Fernandez, 12, is charged with murder in the first degree and aggravated child abuse. He is accused of hitting his half brother David Galarriago on the head at least twice on March 14, killing him. He was indicted in January on a separate sexual battery charge on a victim unrelated to a murder charge from last year. If found guilty on the new charge, Fernandez could face a maximum life sentence. Although Assistant State Attorney Mark Caliel said his office is not pursuing the maximum. Fernandez’s mother, Biannela Susana, is scheduled for trial Feb. 27, according to the Duval County Clerk of Courts website. She was indicted in June, charged with aggravated manslaughter of a child, also in relation to Galarriago’s death. First Coast News

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