Last week, a 66-year-old named Mohammad Anwar was killed in southeast Washington, D.C., when he was thrown from his vehicle after two teenage girls allegedly assaulted him with a Taser and stole his car, causing it to flip.
According to The Washington Post, lawyers for the two teenage girls charged as juveniles “will soon receive plea-bargain offers from a prosecutor,” while “a trial in the case remains possible, if not likely, according to discussions in court Wednesday.”
“Appearing via video in D.C. Superior Court for the second time since the deadly incident occurred March 23, the girls, 13 and 15, looked on silently as defense lawyers and a prosecutor from the D.C. attorney general’s office talked about the next steps in the case with Judge Lynn Leibovitz,” The Washington Post reported.
“The prosecutor, Bonnie Lindemann, gave no indication that her office is contemplating an attempt to transfer the older girl’s case to adult court, as D.C. law would allow under certain circumstances. As for the younger girl, she could not be prosecuted as an adult in the District for any crime because of her age,” the report continued.
Under D.C. law, the 13-year-old girl cannot be prosecuted as an adult. It is possible for the 15-year-old to be transferred to adult court.
Leibovitz reportedly asked Lindemann whether she had provided the defense lawyers proposed plea agreements for the two suspects.
“Not yet, your honor,” the prosecutor replied. “We expect to be able to do that in the next day or two.”
The two teenage girls are charged with multiple offenses, including felony murder, carjacking, and armed robbery. The Washington Post reported that the two have pleaded “not involved,” the equivalent of “not guilty” in juvenile court.
The Washington Post then noted that “The focus of the juvenile court is entirely on rehabilitation, not punishment.”
“After a trial, if youths are found ‘responsible,’ meaning guilty, they can be held in a juvenile detention facility only until age 21, even in a murder case. If deemed rehabilitated, they can be freed much sooner,” the report added.
According to Fox 5 DC, Criminal Defense Attorney Nikki Lotze stated that a plea agreement, assuming that the juvenile accepts responsibility, could involve home detention or probation.
“If you were to reach a plea agreement, then the juvenile would admit involvement,” said Lotze, who also said the agreement could include, “… potentially being in a youth shelter involvement, which is similar to a jail but for juveniles. Or could involve being on home detention or being on probation.”
Mohammad Anwar, who was working as an Uber Eats driver at the time of his death, was a father and grandfather with loved ones in both the U.S. and Pakistan, according to his family, who described the crime as “senseless.”
“He was a hardworking immigrant who came to the U.S. in 2014 to build a better life for himself and his family,” his family said in a statement. “The loss for his family is immeasurable.”
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