WASHINGTON - A second D.C. Superior Court judge refused Friday to release the 16-year-old girl charged in connection with fatally stabbing Naima Liggon.
A D.C. police detective testified in court that the stabbing started with an argument over McDonald's sweet and sour sauce.
The teenage suspect, facing second-degree murder among other charges, was ordered to remain in a secure juvenile facility until trial is expected to begin in October. She was also ordered to undergo a psych evaluation.
The hearing was held on the same day the District will begin a Juvenile Curfew Enforcement Pilot, impacting kids who are 16 years old and younger.
We’ll never know if that pilot program could’ve prevented the Aug. 27 early morning murder. However, the timeframe of the fatal stabbing – happening at around 2:10 a.m. Sunday – and the scene where the stabbing happened – along the U Street Corridor – are both being targeted in this pilot curfew.
The U.S. Attorney for D.C., Matthew M. Graves, announced this week that he instructed his team to pursue adult charges against 16 and 17-year-old robbery and carjacking-spree suspects.
D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser was asked about the changes at a press event Thursday .
"I didn’t have the conversation with the U.S. Attorney, so I’m quite sure if he said it he has some trend information or data to suggests that that’s the appropriate prosecution journey. I would welcome him to have that conversation with all of us," Mayor Bowser said. "I think we need both prosecutors in the District to take this seriously. None of us want to be in a position where we’re teaching children that there are no consequences for bad activity because if we don’t teach them, they’re going to learn it one way or another. And they’re going to learn it, unfortunately by going to a hospital, going to a funeral, or going to jail."
Mayor Bowser did not directly answer FOX 5’s question regarding whether she felt the fatal 16-year-old stabbing suspect should’ve been charged as an adult. The teen is currently facing second-degree murder as a juvenile.
FOX 5 spoke with the mother of a 15-year-old shooting victim whose murderer could not be charged as an adult because of D.C. law. That mother told FOX 5 she feels like cars are being valued more than lives.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office told FOX 5 that they have a number of homicide and shooting cases where juveniles have been charged as adults. They explained that the USAO’s comments earlier were not new but more to reaffirm the position crimes they can pursue adult charges on, based-on previously agreed policy.
"We agree with many of our elected leaders who believe that juveniles should generally be treated as juveniles. But armed robberies and armed carjackings are serious offenses that we have unfortunately seen recently, sometimes escalate to homicides," U.S. Attorney Matthew M. Graves said on Wednesday.
Catherine Abodo, a concerned parent, told FOX 5, "I think if we are more strict with the punishments, we will see less crime. I think we should also hold the parents accountable to some degree."
The pilot curfew starts at 12:01 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 2. The curfew will be enforced from 12:01 to 6 a.m. on Saturdays and Sundays.
From Sunday to Thursday, the kids will have to be inside from 11:00 p.m. to 6 a.m.
There will be targeted enforcement at the seven specific areas below:
- District 1: Chinatown and Navy Yard
- District 3: U Street area
- District 3: Howard University/Banneker
- District 4: 14th Street between Otis and Spring Road, NW
- District 4: 4000 Georgia Avenue, NW
- District 6: 4400-4600 Benning Rd, SE
- District 7: 1300 Congress Street, SE
Police will be taking the teenagers or kids who don't abide by the rules to the Youth Services Center instead of to the police station, so that families can get DYRS help, and officers can get back to patrols.
Eduardo Ferrer, policy director at Georgetown University's Juvenile Justice Initiative, told FOX 5 in an emailed statement:
"It is both alarming and disheartening to see the adoption of a curfew that scapegoats and targets our youth. Research clearly demonstrates that the use of police for curfew enforcement is an impractical and ineffective allocation of MPD resources that will disproportionately harm Black youth. This proposal is yet another example of the Administration's preference for reactive, policing-centered measures and their lack of a real plan to meet the needs of our children and families as they struggle to recover from the impact of the pandemic. We will not meet the needs of the day by resurrecting the failed policies of the past."