SPRINGFIELD TOWNSHIP, Ohio — A 15-year-old went before a juvenile judge Tuesday charged with the murder of her 16-year-old brother. Police said the teen stabbed her brother in the heart after a dispute over a gaming console.
"I heard my neighbor screaming,” said Denis Boyd, who lives in the Springfield Township apartment complex where the stabbing happened. “I went out and it happened to be the young man he was by my car."
Boyd said the scene near her front door was chaotic and traumatic.
"I really feel sorry for the mom,” Boyd said. “She was devastated. She was in a state of shock. Her witnessing her son dying and then her baby girl was in the [police] car, it was sad."
The teenagers' mother called police shortly after the stabbing asking for an ambulance.
"My children were fighting because my son stole my daughter's PlayStation 4," she said to the dispatcher. "And she stabbed him."
While she was on the phone with 911, neighbor Valentino Brewton was applying pressure to the chest wound, hoping he could save the young man's life.
"He was saying his sister did it over a game,” Brewton said. “I was just trying to talk positive — told him he didn't have to say nothing, 'You're strong, you're strong. You're going to shake this off.'"
Boyd said she remembers the teens' mother looking stunned.
"I stood there with her,” Boyd said. “The grandmother comes up and mentions, ‘You know he's got issues.' Mom was totally in shock. I'm looking at her, I’m seeing her eyes. She was devastated."
Juvenile court judge Melissa Powers told WCPO in the past two years there has been a 600% increase in murder charges against teens in Hamilton County.
“There's typically a history of trauma, or childhood maltreatment or contact with our child welfare system,” Powers said. “75% of the children charged with murder in the last year and that we currently see in juvenile court have had some contact with our court and the child welfare system."
WCPO did not see any prior records with the juvenile court for the 15-year-old.
"I just wish that our mental health system was better,” Boyd said. “These young people are dealing with things that we didn't have to deal with years ago."
The teen charged with murder will go before a judge again later this month. According to court documents, the Hamilton County prosecutor will look to have her bonded over as an adult.