RIVERSIDE (CBSLA.com/AP) — A 13-year-old boy who became one of the nation’s youngest killers when he shot his neo-Nazi father to death as the man slept was sentenced Thursday to at least seven years in a juvenile facility.
Joseph Hall was convicted of second-degree murder for the crime he committed at age 10 in 2011. He will be housed at a state juvenile correctional facility, a judge ruled.
Judge Jean R. Leonard ruled Thursday that the maximum the boy can serve would be 10 years, which would make him about 23 when he gets out. He’ll be eligible for parole in seven years.
The killing of Jeffrey Hall captured nationwide attention because of his son’s age and the father’s beliefs.
The 32-year-old unemployed plumber was a regional leader of the National Socialist Movement and organized neo-Nazi rallies at synagogues and day labor sites.
He had hosted a meeting for his group at his house the day before his son killed him on May 1, 2011.
Prosecutors say the boy shot his father behind the ear at point-blank range as he slept on a sofa after coming home from a night of drinking. The child later told police he was afraid he would have to choose between living with his father and his stepmother, who were headed for a divorce.
Attorneys for the boy have said he reacted after years of horrific abuse that left him with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, anger and fear issues, learning disabilities and other emotional problems.
The boy’s attorney called the sentence a “miscarriage of justice.”
CBS2′s Tom Wait reports that in a twist in the case, the prosecutor, Michael Soccio, said he had grown attached to Hall and wanted the right to visit him at the juvenile facility where he will be housed.
The judge granted the request and the defense also signed off on the unusual motion.
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