Frederick, MD – Today in Frederick County Circuit Court, a 15-year-old respondent pled guilty to Manslaughter for the September 20th offense at the Frederick Fair that resulted in the death of Mr. John Marvin Weed of Mount Airy. The State requested that the youth be tried as an adult, but after a lengthy hearing in February the Court determined he would remain in the juvenile system. The youth has been held in detention since the incident, and remains there pending a disposition hearing on May 15, 2020 at 11a.m. Mr. Weed’s family participated in today’s hearing via video conference, and will be involved in the disposition hearing as well. They have faithfully attended every hearing, and want to see the youth held accountable in an appropriate juvenile residential program.
The offense occurred September 20, 2019 at the Great Frederick Fair. Mr. Weed was enjoying a family night at the fair when he was approached by the 15-year-old juvenile male and a couple friends. The teen and another youth asked Mr. Weed for money. Mr. Weed said “no”. The youth kept pursuing Mr. Weed, despite family members begging the youth to leave him alone. The facts that the teen stipulated included that he hit Mr. Weed twice as Mr. Weed walked away, then his brother got involved and hit him twice. When Mr. Weed was facing his 16-year-old brother, the respondent came running from a distance and punched Mr. Weed with such force, the photos indicate he had lost consciousness almost immediately. Mr. Weed never regained consciousness and died of his injuries the next day at Shock Trauma in Baltimore. The facts as detailed in the Courtroom on Wednesday indicated that not one witness who was present with the respondent, nor Mr. Weed’s family, nor the teen himself, said that this was a race-related incident. All of the individuals were interviewed by the Frederick County Sheriff’s Detectives and never accused Mr. Weed of using any racial slur.
Following today’s hearing, State’s Attorney Charlie Smith commented, “Holding him responsible for the manslaughter was the very first thing we wanted to accomplish for the family and community, regardless of whether he was tried as an adult or juvenile. The family and my prosecutors are pleased that has now occurred.” Smith added, “We now turn our efforts toward the disposition set for May 15. Since the judge made the decision to keep him in the juvenile system, that means the judge and juvenile services will focus on his rehabilitation, not punishment like the adult system. That’s a reality that we have to deal with, and one the family understands as well.”