Teens plead guilty to misdemeanor; girl faces charges
Published 12:00 am Thursday, June 19, 2003
NATCHEZ &045; Three teens once charged falsely with rape and kidnapping pleaded guilty to misdemeanor charges of contributing to the delinquency of a minor.
Derrick Montrell Carter, 17, of 1170 Martin Luther King Jr.; Tre Michael Hebert, 17, of 7 Cottage Farm Road; and Lorenzo Jermaine Green, 18, of 17-B Ram Circle, entered their pleas Tuesday morning in Adams County Justice Court.
They were each sentenced to pay $500 fines, plus court courts and bonding fees. They were sentenced to serve 90 days in the county jail, a sentence Judge Bryan Callaway suspended. And they will serve two years of probation, although their records can be expunged after one year.
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&uot;I wouldn’t want them to graduate next year and have this charge&uot; on their records, said County Prosecuting Attorney Barrett Martin.
On May 16, a 15-year-old girl filed with the Adams County Sheriff’s Office a report stating that the three young men kidnapped her near the school gym’s dressing area during lunch earlier that day after displaying a gun.
The girl had said the young men then drove her to the LaGrange subdivision and forced her to engage in sex before driving her back to school before the lunch break ended. The girl was taken to Natchez Regional for examination and released.
But June 10 the girl, accompanied by her mother, reported to the Sheriff’s Office and told deputies the sex was consensual and that no gun was involved, according to Sheriff Tommy Ferrell.
The young men could have faced charges of sexual battery due to the age difference between them and the victim.
Neither the girl &045; who faces in Adams County Youth Court a charge of filing a false report &045; nor the family and friends who were with her would comment as they left the courtroom.
But some relatives of those accused of the crimes had much to say about their ordeal.
&uot;My grandson endured so much humiliation. I hated for him to have to go through with this,&uot; said Jessie Carter, grandmother of defendant Derrick Carter.
&uot;I know it wasn’t right for him to participate (in the incident), but something should be done to (the girl) besides in juvenile court to help rectify this situation. Š We’re just going to try lead a normal life.&uot;
Ronnie Herbert, father of Tre Michael Herbert, said he believes schools should educate faculty, staff and students to the legal implications of older students having sex with younger ones.
&uot;And there’s a lot of parents who don’t know,&uot; Ronnie Herbert said. &uot;If they’re not going to teach sex education in the schools, they ought to at least give students pamphlets about (the law) and make them take them home and have their parents sign it.&uot;
For her part, Tiffany Carter, the legal guardian of Derrick Carter, had only one thing to say: &uot;I’m not happy with the decision, but I’m just glad it’s over.&uot;