Teen Who Killed Rival Cheerleader Sentenced

15-year-old could be out in 3 years
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 25, 2023 3:18 PM CST

A 15-year-old girl who killed a rival cheerleader last year apologized for her "bad choices" Tuesday before she was sentenced. The girl, whose name isn't being disclosed due to her age, pleaded guilty last month to manslaughter in the April death of 16-year-old Kayla Green after an event in Mount Vernon, a suburb of New York City, NBC reports. She was sentenced to between three and nine years in jail by State Supreme Court Justice Susan Cacace, who said it was a "juvenile sentence." The teen will remain in a juvenile detention center until she is 18, when she will either be released or transferred to a facility for adults, depending on her behavior while incarcerated.

Carace said the teen had a history of violent conduct and there was a "long-standing rivalry between two cheerleading squads in the city of Mount Vernon," CBS reports. Green, captain of the Mount Vernon High School cheer squad, was stabbed in a brawl after a parade and rally to celebrate the basketball team's championship victory, ABC7 reports. Another teen, 16-year-old Maniece Simpson, was stabbed but survived. "This was an intentional, senseless and vicious crime which has caused immeasurable pain," said Assistant Westchester County DA James Bavero. Prosecutors said the girl displayed the knife on social media on the day of the stabbings.

The teen cried as she spoke in court Tuesday, CBS reports. "I think of all the different choices I could have made that day that would have left Kayla alive and saved her family this heartache," she said. "But that is why everyone is here today, because I made bad choices." Relatives including mother Lavern Green and Tasania Rhoden, Kayla's aunt, said the sentence was too lenient. "Three years for a murder is nothing. That’s nothing. We have to go to visit a grave to see my niece," Rhoden said. "And meanwhile, there’s a young woman who in three years, will be outside skipping." (More New York state stories.)

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