Family of Blount teen killed in accidental shooting devastated

Family of Blount teen killed in accidental shooting devastated after recent juvenile court proceedings

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Skyler Boring (source: family) Skyler Boring (source: family)
Grandmother Judy Mincey said she was heartbroken and hopeless Wednesday since the teen charged and arrested in her grandson's fatal shooting was in juvenile court. Grandmother Judy Mincey said she was heartbroken and hopeless Wednesday since the teen charged and arrested in her grandson's fatal shooting was in juvenile court.
Judy Mincey carries Skyler Boring's ashes in a locket. Judy Mincey carries Skyler Boring's ashes in a locket.
By LAURA HALM
6 News Reporter

WALLAND (WATE) - The teen charged in the accidental shooting death of another Maryville teen last year, recently entered a guilty plea to criminally negligent homicide.

Skyler Boring, who wrestled for Heritage High School, died on May 28, 2013. His death was originally ruled an accidental shooting. Blount County investigators arrested their suspect nearly two weeks ago, but did not release his name because he was 17 years old at the time.

Previous story: Maryville teen killed in apparent accidental shooting

The suspect was in juvenile court Tuesday, but few details are being released and 6 News was not allowed in the courtroom. The Boring family says they simply wanted to bring justice for Skyler but feel like they've lost that battle and are simply devastated.

Carried in a locket are the ashes of Skyler Boring. "It is the key to my heart," said his grandmother Judy Mincey.

Previous story: Teen charged in 2013 accidental shooting death of Maryville 17-year-old

Mincey said she was heartbroken and hopeless Wednesday since the teen charged and arrested in her grandson's fatal shooting was in juvenile court.

"Somebody pleads guilty to killing him and they don't spend a single night in jail. Not one," she said.

The Boring family's attorney Joseph Costner told 6 News the suspect pleaded guilty to criminally negligent homicide, which is a delinquent act because he was a juvenile at the time.

Costner says that the suspect could have at most been held in jail until he turned 19 years old, which is Friday. Costner adds essentially the suspect will not face any kind of punishment because of the way laws in Tennessee are structured, where the juvenile court system loses jurisdiction once someone turns 19 years old.

"This was his get out of jail free card. He killed my grandson and he doesn't have to pay at all in my view."

The family feels frustrated and that justice has been lost, wondering why this case wasn't transferred to adult court. The Blount County District Attorney's Office determined it did not have the factors necessary to initiate transfer proceedings.

"Does my heart want to believe it's an accident? Oh God yes, but does my head believe it was an accident? Nobody's convinced me," said Mincey.

So a little more than a year later, this family got their day in court. But it's a day that will haunt them for the rest of their lives.

"They told us and they told Skyler, his life was worth nothing. And that's how we feel right or wrong," said Mincey.

We did reach out to the suspect's attorney for comment, though we have not heard back yet.

The Boring family says they plan on moving forward with their $1.5 million civil lawsuit against the suspect and others also named, which includes the owners of the property where the shooting took place as well as the gun's owner.
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