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Teens' mental states considered in beating case

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Five teenagers charged with beating Terence Reese and breaking his jaw in March will have to keep waiting to find out whether they'll be tried in Superior Court -- which would have them facing prison sentences seven times longer than they could be given as minors.



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A juvenile court hearing Friday ended with Judge Willie Saunders pledging to release a written decision on whether to try the teens -- Ross Nipple, 15; Berten Blockett, 16; Joshua Plowright, 14; Mark Daniel Richard Musick, 14; and Brandon Mansson, 14 -- as adults, but not stating a specific timetable for the decision.

If convicted of aggravated battery and criminal gang activity in juvenile court, they could be committed to the Department of Juvenile Justice for a maximum of five years, with the department deciding at what point they could be released or placed on probation.

But in Superior Court the aggravated battery charge carries a sentence of one to 20 years, and the gang charge a sentence of five to 15 years.

On the final day of the hearing -- which was postponed last week -- attorneys listened as two psychologists testified to the teens' dispositions and mental fitness. Dr. Adrienne Davis, a forensic psychologist with East Central Regional Hospital, said Plowright suffers from ADHD, depression and had attended special education classes since the third grade.

Musick has an IQ of 127 -- in the superior range -- and Davis recommended he be in a mentorship program and be enrolled in classes that support his academic strengths. She also advised therapy and substance-abuse counseling for the teen.

Dr. Joseph Frey, a private-practice psychologist who examined some of the teens, said Blockett seemed "egocentric," prone to aggressive behavior and has little understanding of the impact of his actions on others.

Mansson suffers from a form of conduct disorder, in which he displays disregard for "people, persons and animals."

But in other tests he expressed a "sense of regret" for the beating, Frey said. Nipple was polite but superficial.

"His stories contained themes of lost family conflict as well as stories of violence and aggression," Frey said.

Cyrus King, an intake worker for the Department of Juvenile Justice, testified that he felt the teens could be treated within the juvenile justice system based solely on their lack of previous criminal history.

Authorities allege that four of the suspects -- Blockett, Plowright, Mansson and Musick -- are members of the Apple Valley Posse gang, based off Mike Padgett Highway, while Nipple claimed to be in the Bloods gang.

The teens are accused of ruthlessly beating Reese as he was walking home from school on Circular Drive in an activity called "locking down the block."

Reach Adam Folk and Johnny Edwards

at (706) 724-0851

Notes on mental evaluations

In a hearing Friday to determine whether the five teens charged in the beating of Terence Reese should be tried as adults, forensic psychologists Adrienne Davis and Joseph Frey testified that none of them were mentally retarded or mentally ill, which would have been a legal barrier to transferring the case to Superior Court.

Among the doctors' other comments regarding the five:

BERTEN BLOCKETT

- Little apathy for others, egocentric, arrogant and prone to aggressive behavior

- Reported that he smoked marijuana six to seven times per day

BRANDON MANSSON

- Meets criteria for a serious conduct disorder, wherein a person displays disregard for people, property or animals in a repetitive manner and usually moves on to adult criminal behavior

- Gave the following answers on a fill-in-the-blank psychological test: I like ... to ride my bike; I regret ... watching that boy get beat up; I feel ... sad for the boy 'cause his jaw is broken; I can't ... stop thinking about that Monday afternoon.

MARK DANIEL RICHARD MUSICK

- Has an IQ of 127, which is considered in the "superior" range

- Wanted to join the Marines and become an engineer. Said he wasn't in a gang

ROSS NIPPLE

- Polite, superficial, self-centered, shows feelings of superiority and lacks respect for family members.

- Gave the following answers on a fill-in-the blank psychological test: Sometimes ... people junk talk gets to me; Dating ... is something I always do; Most girls ... like my swag.

JOSHUA PLOWRIGHT

- Has been in special education classes since third grade

- Has a history of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and depression

- No signs of violent tendencies noted

Source: Adrienne Davis, forensic psychologist at East Central Regional Hospital-Augusta (evaluated Musick and Plowright); Joseph Frey, a psychologist in private practice specializing in forensic and business-oriented psychology (evaluated Blockett, Mansson and Nipple)

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sdrwtcn
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sdrwtcn 05/22/10 - 05:02 am
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Terence Reese should have

Terence Reese should have considered all this before he decided to go walking down the street? What a bunch of Hooey!

johnston.cliff
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johnston.cliff 05/22/10 - 04:23 am
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The "children", products of

The "children", products of the government subsidy system, are a danger to society. The juvenile storage facility, while certainly a punishment, does nothing to improve the situation and the government counseling programs are just another form of enabling. The root cause, the government subsidy system, will continue so the only question is how to treat the symptom. I see no improvement with this effort.

Hera
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Hera 05/22/10 - 06:33 am
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Dude, it does not give the

Dude, it does not give the financial background of these kids anywhere in this article. I guess because you see the names of these kids you associate them as being black so in conclusion you automatically assume that they are recipients of the government subsidy system. Aren't you even concerned for the fact that a kid was beaten almost to death? Why do you people always go that route when "gang related" activity hits the news? We should figure out how to get danger off of our streets than ridicule others. Ridding a form of financial assistance to people will only make matters worse. Why don't we just put them all in prisons? But oh wait, prisons provide medical insurance, food, and tuition for prisoners and that's still a form of subsidy. What to do Johnston, man of all knowing???

crackerjack
153
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crackerjack 05/22/10 - 06:42 am
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Isn't it funny how all of

Isn't it funny how all of their traits nowadays can be explained by a bunch of initials. When not too long ago, mean, hateful, violent actions by a gang of worthless excuses for human beings would be dealt with by incarceration. Now they get evaluated by psychiatrists, paid for by the taxpayer, to tell us they have a mental problem. A blind man can see they have mental problem, and need to be punished accordingly.

crackerjack
153
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crackerjack 05/22/10 - 06:43 am
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Whoops, my statement above

Whoops, my statement above will be censured because I said something hateful about this nice gang.

avidreader
3558
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avidreader 05/22/10 - 06:46 am
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Hera, how's Zues?

Hera, how's Zues?

Hera
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Hera 05/22/10 - 06:57 am
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Cracker, I agree with you on

Cracker, I agree with you on incarseration, however calling any human "worthless excuses for human beings" is very ignorant. Avid, maybe you should consider spellcheck because I don't know a "Zues".

Martinez
154
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Martinez 05/22/10 - 07:17 am
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Who knew that the lack of

Who knew that the lack of moral values, compassion, home training, etc could be explained away as a mental disorder? It looks like the working class will be supporting these punks for a long time one way or another: Prison or SSI. My vote is prison - - it might cost more initially but maybe we can stop Mr. Nipple from spreading his Swag and creating more little dependents.

Hera
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Hera 05/22/10 - 07:31 am
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Again, where does it state in

Again, where does it state in the article that we are supporting these kids financially? How do we know that the parents of these mindless children aren't part of the working class? I'm not defending these criminals but I'm not being biased either. You people can never stick to the subject on these articles. You always assume and ridicule. Let's discuss the facts only. A young child was beaten by criminals, what can we do to prevent this crap from happening??? Our hard-earned money is spent on a lot "dumb" things other than welfare. But what does that have to do with these young kids growing up as inmates. But then again, most of you don't care about kids other than your own kind.

Martinez
154
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Martinez 05/22/10 - 07:41 am
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Hera - let me spell this out

Hera - let me spell this out for you - we ARE supporting them! They are currently involved in the publicly funded legal system - whether the jail, the judge, the so called psychological experts being used - the working class is already paying for them! If they go to prison - we continue to pay for them. If they are deemed too damaged to stand adult trial - we continue to pay for them through the juve system. And if they are deemed too mentally ill to be held accountable for their actions - again - who do you think will pay for them? And NO this article does not list their financial assets but if you have followed the story at all, you would already know the backgrounds. The one thing I will agree with you on is yes, we do spend a lot of money on dumb things other then welfare. For starters trying to defend these punks who heartlessly beat a young man for nothing more then walking down the wrong street. He is a good student with a good future - where is your concern or compassion for him or his mother who had to helplessly hear the whole thing unfold?

Hera
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Hera 05/22/10 - 07:53 am
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Martinez-My comment was in

Martinez-My comment was in response to Cracker saying, The "children", products of the government subsidy system, are a danger to society. HOW DO WE KNOW THAT THEY ARE PRODUCTS OF WELFARE???? Read these statements completely before you try to insult my intelligence. And never....Never....NEVER did I say that I was defending them, understand that. I am trying to put the focus on that child that was beaten. My compassion has been with her from the start. Ask "Cracker" where is his concern for the mother of the beaten kid.

Patty-P
3520
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Patty-P 05/22/10 - 08:18 am
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Why wasn't a pschological

Why wasn't a pschological evaluation offered to the teen that was beaten? And what types of answers would we expect from young teens at this age? They are young boys. How does Mansson's answers relate him to having a serious repetitive disorder? And isn't some of this information supposed to be held confidential? This is a medical/mental examination...don't these kids have the right to the confidentiality of their medical records at this point?

Martinez
154
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Martinez 05/22/10 - 08:21 am
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Sounds like cracker, like me,

Sounds like cracker, like me, have followed this story a little closer then you or you wouldn't keep asking the same silly question. You can capitalize it all day long, try reading archived articles on this story and you will find your own answers. And while I wouldn't word it as harshly as he, yes govt subsidies do play a huge part in this. Look in any city and you will find higher crime rates, gang violence etc in areas of concentrated public subsidies. When you say ridding forms of financial assistance will make things worse - give me a solid fact based arguement on how continuing them will make things better?

Patty-P
3520
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Patty-P 05/22/10 - 08:22 am
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Also, ADHD kids have problems

Also, ADHD kids have problems with impulsivity. They do things on impulse with no regards to their actions at the time.

Tots
26317
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Tots 05/22/10 - 08:31 am
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I think they all should get

I think they all should get the maximum five years from Juvenile court,then Musick,Nipple,Mansson and Blockett,should get five to eight years probation.Plowright should get time then two years probation.They all need help,the parents should have to help with that cost.

Martinez
154
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Martinez 05/22/10 - 08:40 am
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I agree Patty but so do kids

I agree Patty but so do kids with no home training, morales, values and compassion for others......... And there are no objective truths medically to determine the difference. How do we stop every kid who acts impulsively without thinking first from using ADHD as their defense? I grew up before the alphabet soup game started. I can think back to some kids who clearly would have been diagnosed ADHD had they been raised 20 - 30 years later. But what stopped them from acting on every impulse was the fear of punishment whether from parents, school, society etc. As hard as it may have been for those kids, expectations weren't lowered for them, they weren't given excuses and most went on to live pretty productive non-criminal lives. There were serious lines crossed in beating this young man and I struggle to believe these other man, mentally ill or not, didn't recognize it at the time they were doing it.

Jane18
12332
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Jane18 05/22/10 - 09:02 am
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Everything is a mental

Everything is a mental isorder!! I am so tired of hearing excuse after excuse for bad behaviour. The disorders these young people and others have are lack of respect, no conscience, bad parenting, and most of all, no love for mankind. They are the most selfish of any living thing on the earth, all they care about are themselves and maybe, their fellow gang members(I even doubt that). Pack'em off to the nearest jailing facility! Exactly what was the reason they beat Terrence Reese? Oh yeah! They didn't need a reason....................

Jane18
12332
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Jane18 05/22/10 - 09:03 am
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sorry about the missing d on

sorry about the missing d on disorder.

beboisme
425
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beboisme 05/22/10 - 09:21 am
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Line each of them up and let

Line each of them up and let a beating of the same caliber be inflicted upon them. One's "swag"could be come "erectile disfuntion", which could be a good thing, reproducing more of the same is a crying shame, and should be against the law, like stealing a pair of Oakleys.

billyjones1949
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billyjones1949 05/22/10 - 09:21 am
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Hera I could care less if the

Hera I could care less if the children are black or white. They beat this boy up for no reason at all. There should be no excuse for that because of their "mental state". Prison time is the correct response from a civilized society that sends a stern message to the others in other gangs that decent people will not put up with violence. And yes there is evidence that there is more violence in areas that aree heavy in public assistance. If you do not believe me ride thru Apple Valley and check it out for yourself and any other area like Apple Valley.

Hera
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Hera 05/22/10 - 09:23 am
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Ok Matinez, you have a valid

Ok Matinez, you have a valid point. I'm not for government assistance and really I don't care whether they take it or leave it. If they do not take money out for welfare they will find something else to take it out for. However I am done discussing the statuses of this society. Those young men should be punished and tried as adults. I just wish that hate, violence, and ignorance didn't exist, this world could be a beautiful place to live in.

Hera
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Hera 05/22/10 - 09:23 am
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Ok Matinez, you have a valid

Ok Matinez, you have a valid point. I'm not for government assistance and really I don't care whether they take it or leave it. If they do not take money out for welfare they will find something else to take it out for. However I am done discussing the statuses of this society. Those young men should be punished and tried as adults. I just wish that hate, violence, and ignorance didn't exist, this world could be a beautiful place to live in.

billyjones1949
1
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billyjones1949 05/22/10 - 09:28 am
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I never heard the term "swag"

I never heard the term "swag" but aren't the children too young to be exercising their "swag". and who is supposed to raise the children from this exercise. I forget it is my right to have children when I have no means of support but it is your responsibility to pay for their support. Isn't that a novel idea?

Jillian
2
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Jillian 05/22/10 - 09:32 am
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Who is going to report the

Who is going to report the medical effects this has had on the victim? What kind of mental anguish is he suffering after this brutal attack? What about PTSD? It may surface years later. What about his parent's? Are they going to be compensated for their mental anguish? How much of the medical bills have been paid for? The thug's who did it should have to pay them.
I think a lot of people are waiting to hear the other side of the story.

disssman
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disssman 05/22/10 - 09:52 am
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Hera. I would suggest you

Hera. I would suggest you take them in and be responsible for them. It would appear you feel they have been mistreated or mis judged by the populace and your care would be a sign of compassion. So hurry now and go see the judge and sign your agreement to care and nuture them.

beboisme
425
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beboisme 05/22/10 - 09:55 am
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Wake up billyjones 1949, it

Wake up billyjones 1949, it is now the year 2010!! And "swag' is encouraged by their ignorant so called parents who strongly advise these sexual activities at their young ages in order to get in the welfare line and "get paid". Nothing new, in fact my neighbor excercises these rights of hers, with three of her own off-spring, no known "daddy", and plenty pot to last until the next payday. Life is as they want it without any intervention from DFACS. I say no pee, no assistance, and with that said, no "chilren". With no "chilren", no welfare, no problem, less crime from mentally ill off-spring.

corgimom
38381
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corgimom 05/22/10 - 09:59 am
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Lock them away in jail so

Lock them away in jail so they don't hurt any other innocent person. They know right from wrong.

disssman
6
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disssman 05/22/10 - 09:59 am
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Hera. Sometimes people are

Hera. Sometimes people are so blind that they don't believe being hit in the head by a 2X4 hurts, until it happens to them. I don't know if the thugs are on welfare or not but given the circumstances, and the way the thugs are acting, it is a better than even chance they are section 8 welfare folks. Believe me from what I see in my neighborhood, they fit the mold.

jdoggtn
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jdoggtn 05/22/10 - 10:04 am
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No juvenile should EVER be

No juvenile should EVER be charged as an adult, because a juvenile is NOT an adult. Is there ever a situation in which an adult would be charged as a juvenile? Of course not. Why on earth would the seriousness of the charges play a role in whether to try as a juvenile or not? The age of the accused is an objective fact. Either they are 18 years old or older or they're not. If they're juvenile, try as a juvenile, if they're adult, try as an adult. The law is not supposed to allow subjectivity, such as our outrage at the nature of the crime they are accused of, or the grief of the victim's relatives, or any other non-objective, non-legal criterion. The law is supposed to be cold, impersonal. "How old were the accused?" "What did they do?" "Was there any provocation?" "OK, this will be the punishment for what they did." That is the way the law is supposed to work. Not "Try them as adults, because we citizens are outraged at what they did." How many posters on this board would be saying "Try them as adults" if it were your own kids who were part of that "posse."

charliemanson
1
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charliemanson 05/22/10 - 10:06 am
0
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Interesting when we used to

Interesting when we used to have "gangs of whites" terrorizing others in the South that no one blamed their behavior on "public assistance."

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