ST. JOSEPH, Mo. – A northwest Missouri teenager has described himself as “spoiled and stupid” in pleading guilty to killing his grandparents.
The St. Joseph News-Press reports that 16-year-old Joseph Johnson said he “mistook discipline for abuse” in entering the plea Monday in Buchanan County Circuit Court.
Johnson initially was charged as an adult with two counts of first-degree murder.
Prosecutors later lowered the charges to second-degree murder.
The teen was home-schooled and lived with his grandparents, 72-year-old James Johnson and 76-year-old Beverly Johnson.
The teen told how he’d fired two pistols, the first shot missed but the second, from his grandfather’s pistol, slammed into the temple of Beverly Johnson. The next shot went into the back of his grandfather’s head.
He was arrested during a traffic stop in July in Platte County a few hours after their deaths.
Court records say the deputy who stopped him discovered he had $600, a credit card belonging to his grandparents and directions to Louisville, Kentucky.
The sentencing is set for March 4.