EPHRATA, Wash. - Barry Loukaitis, who was sentenced to life in prison for killing his teacher and several students 20 years ago when he was just 16, will be re-sentenced on Wednesday.
Even though the Supreme Court has ruled that kids who commit murder when they are under the age of 16 can't be sentenced to life without parole, Barry Loukiatis may still die of old age behind bars.
Spokane County Prosecutors are pushing for a 189 year sentence.
21 years ago, the man who is currently Grant County's elected prosecutor was a private attorney who represented Barry Loukiatis in the fight over whether Loukiatis would be treated as an adult.
Garth Dano realized he could not fairly represent Grant County in Wednesday's re-sentencing hearing, so he asked Spokane County's Prosecutor to step in and handle the case.
In 1996, Barry Loukaitis walked inside his math class at Frontier Middle School, killed his teacher and two other students, and wounded a third.
“This is a crime that impacted a community,” said Kelly Fitzgerald, Spokane County Deputy Prosecutor.
Even though he was just shy of his 15th birthday, Loukaitis was convicted and sentenced to life in prison.
Moses Lake thought it had seen the last of Loukaitis until the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that we can't send kids to prison without the possibility of parole.
“He forever altered a community and we feel that certainly mitigates any consideration of his age at the time in making a sentencing recommendation,” said Fitzgerald.
On Wednesday, Kelly Fitzgerald is asking the court to re-sentence Loukaitis to 189 years in prison.
She'll argue Loukatis should be punished for the murders as well as holding 16 people hostage at gunpoint.
“Every charge has a deadly weapons enhancement,” said Fitzgerald. “Each one of those enhancements is five years of true time and they run consecutive.”
Those deadly weapons enhancements alone add up to a more than 100 year prison sentence for Loukaitis.
The judge who presided over Loukaitis' trial 20 years ago is briefly coming out of retirement so he can handle Wednesday's re-sentencing in Ephrata.
We'll be there in Grant County Superior Court to let you know what happens.