Originally Posted by Nathan
Are you saying that anyone, as long as they are >18 can commit any cold blooded crime and claim "Well.. I'm just 16. I'm just an immature punk, and I will probably regret this later" and get by with something like this? No. They knew damn well what they were doing, and knew it was illegal. There is NO justification for those boys' actions. NONE!
That being said....
The way the law is set up, if you are under 18 you are tried as a juvenile. That means that you will go to a juvi hall until you are 18 if convicted. After 18, you will be released.
However, at the discretion of court, anyone under 18 can be tried as an adult if it has been concluded that the suspect was mature enough to understand the consequences and morality of their actions. This happens with most homicides and violent crimes, especially for repeat offenders.
In neither case are the action of the suspect justified, they are just treated differently if the suspect is under 18.
So the answer to your question is, no, if you are under 18, you can't just commit any crime and expect to get away with it because you are underage.