CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Kanawha County Prosecuting Attorney Mark Plants said Monday his office is investigating how to proceed in a case involving an 8-year-old boy accused of stabbing his sister.
The boy is accused of stabbing his 4-year-old sister in the neck with a knife after the girl found him stabbing her doll in their Hunt Avenue home in Charleston at about 4 p.m. Sunday, according to police.
Plants expected the girl to be released from a hospital later Monday or Tuesday.
During a news conference, the prosecutor said there has never been a similar situation in West Virginia involving a juvenile as young as 8. He said the state Division of Juvenile Services, charged with housing juvenile offenders, doesn't accept anyone under the age of 10.
"This really is an issue of first impression for the criminal justice system in West Virginia," Plants said.
"We're going to move forward with this case just like any other case," he said. "We're going to do what's in the interest of the public first -- the very first consideration is public safety."
No charges have been filed against the children's parents.
"At this point there's no evidence that shows any signs of neglect on the parents' part. There's also no evidence that this could've been avoided," Plants said.
Juvenile cases are confidential, but Plants said he wanted to address some questions after media outlets reported the incident.
"All agencies are going to work together to make sure this child receives whatever mental health services that are in the child's best interest."
Law enforcement and Child Protective Services are investigating treatment possibilities.
"Where do we house this child? Ultimately a judge makes that decision. With serious allegations, like this one, typically, it's in a secure, lockdown facility," Plants said. "When allegations are placed against a child of this age, where do you place them? Ultimately a judge will make that decision, but that's something we're trying to work through."
Reach Kate White at kate.wh...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-1723.