Suspect in North Shore rape could be tried as adult - | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Suspect in North Shore rape could be tried as adult

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CHATTANOOGA, TN (WRCB) - The 17-year old charged with felony aggravated rape is being held in juvenile detention until a transfer hearing date is set.

The Chattanooga District Attorney's office filed a transfer hearing petition, which would move the case to criminal court and the suspect would be tried as an adult.
The suspect's first court appearance was Thursday afternoon at the Hamilton County Juvenile Court. 

A court document shows the 69-year-old man was raped, received serious bodily injury and suffered blunt force trauma to his head.  
The 17-year old charged with the crime will stay in juvenile detention until his next court hearing.

The teenager's parents were the only ones allowed in court for the detention hearing, but several other family members were at the juvenile court for support. After the brief hearing was over, the parents walked out wiping tears and visibly upset.

READ MORE | Running community at ease after rape suspect is arrested

The minor was appointed a public defender.

The first petition filed to charge the minor says, "the defendant gave a written and verbal confession." But after his hearing, that petition was dismissed and the new petition has no mention of a confession.

The minor's parents and other family members joined him at the hearing. 

 "My son is not guilty," his mother said, "He's not that type of person and there's two sides to every story."

His family says the 17-year old high school junior has a speech and learning disability, and he was pressured by police into making a false confession.
"He was going to school, standing at the bus stop, and the man approached him," said his older brother.

His older brother spoke with the teenager by phone since the arrest. He says his brother did not know the older man running, but they do live in the same neighborhood.

"I'm just waiting on to see how this is going to go but I know he didn't do it," said his older brother, "And I don't the people in fear in the neighborhood that it happened and the he really did it."

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