Tags: Florida | Boy | Guilty | Murdering | Teacher

Florida Boy Guilty of Murdering Teacher

Wednesday, 16 May 2001 12:00 AM

The boy was found guilty of shooting and killing English teacher Barry Grunow, 35, in a hallway outside his classroom at Lake Worth Middle School nearly a year ago.

He was charged with first-degree murder. First-degree murder would have carried a life sentence, but prosecutors said the most likely sentence would be 25 to 30 years.

The nine-woman, three-man jury deliberated 16 hours over three days, much of it spent listening to a court reporter repeat testimony given in court last week. Jurors also watched videotape of the shooting taken by a surveillance camera in the courtroom.

The shooting occurred on May 26, the last day of the 1999-2000 school year. The prosecution said it was premeditated murder, and the defense called it an accident.

School officials had sent Brazill home for throwing water balloons in school earlier in the day.

Prosecutors said he went home, got a gun belonging to his grandfather and returned to the school, where he tried to see two girls in Grunow's class. They said when Grunow came out of his classroom to talk to Brazill, the youth shot the teacher.

He said he had found his grandfather's gun while he was looking for a telephone a few days before the shooting. He said at that time, he had no intention of using it to hurt anyone.

Brazill, who was 13 at the time of the shooting, said Grunow was his "favorite teacher" and testified that he didn't mean to pull the trigger.

Prosecutor Marc Shiner said in closing arguments that when the boy was asked to show the jury how the gun went off accidentally, he couldn't do it. Defense attorney Robert Udell told the jury the shooting was accidental and not premeditated. He asked the jury not to convict Brazill of first-degree murder and settle on manslaughter instead.

Copyright 2001 by United Press International.

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The boy was found guilty of shooting and killing English teacher Barry Grunow, 35, in a hallway outside his classroom at Lake Worth Middle School nearly a year ago. He was charged with first-degree murder. First-degree murder would have carried a life sentence, but...
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2001-00-16
Wednesday, 16 May 2001 12:00 AM
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