ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — A Bernalillo County gr and jury on Monday indicted a New Mexico teenager in the shooting deaths of his parents and three younger siblings.
The indictment against Nehemiah Griego, 15, includes five counts of first-degree murder and three counts of child abuse resulting in death. The teen, who is being held without bond in the county’s juvenile lockup, has been classified as a serious youthful offender and is facing the charges as an adult.
Griego will be arraigned before a state district judge, but a date has yet to be set for the court proceeding.
The teen was arrested Jan. 20 after Bernalillo County Sheriff’s detectives say he shot his parents, Greg and Sarah Griego, his 9-year-old brother Zephaniah and sisters 5-year-old Jael and 2-year-old Angelina in their home in a rural area south of Albuquerque.
Sheriff Dan Houston has said the teen told detectives he was angry with his mother and had been having homicidal and suicidal thoughts.
Griego’s relatives said after the indictment was announced that justice will not be served by trying the teen as an adult.
“We feel strongly that Greg and his family would have wanted Nehemiah to take responsibility for his acts as a child within the juvenile system,” the family said in a statement. “Pursuing adult sanctions against Nehemiah is unjust and contrary to the victims’ wishes.”
Griego’s relatives have been pushing for a mental health evaluation for the teen in hopes of finding out what led to the violence. They contend that as a juvenile, he didn’t have an adult capacity for making decisions or understanding the consequences.