CENTRALIA — A 15-year-old Centralia juvenile male was sentenced Wednesday to the maximum penalty available after he earlier had pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter for the May shooting death of 13-year-old Jaden Lee Krauss.
Judge Ericka Sanders sentenced the teen to five years in the Juvenile Department of Corrections, after listening to nearly four hours of aggravating and mitigating testimony.
Video recorded questioning of other juveniles present at the time of the shooting revealed a group of teens gathered at the home had been playing a type of Russian roulette, where the defendant reportedly left one live bullet in a gun before pointing the gun at his own head and then pulling the trigger.
They said the defendant repeated the process at another teen in the house before pointing the gun at Krauss, shooting him in the head when the weapon fired.
The defendant, however, said the weapon accidentally fired when he was cleaning the gun.
Prosecutors informed the judge that Krauss’ body was carried down a flight of stairs and placed on the porch of the home that morning, and two blood-soaked towels were hidden in the corner of the room where the shooting occurred and a blood-covered rug was rolled up and placed in another room.
The defendant said he threw the gun off the balcony of the home, but it was never located and evidence showed it was likely removed and hidden.