EUNICE, La. (KLFY) – The family of a Eunice man, who was killed by a juvenile is speaking out against the teen’s sentencing. The 14-year-old juvenile was found guilty of second-degree murder for killing 32-year-old Donavon Reed.
The juvenile was also found guilty of attempted second-degree murder for injuring another adult. He was sentenced to juvenile life.
Donavon Reed’s family told KLFY News 10 that the teen’s punishment was a slap on the wrist for murdering their son. Since the teen was sentenced to juvenile life, according to Louisiana law, he could be released from jail at 21 years old.
That means the juvenile in this case could only spend about six years incarcerated for murdering Donavon Reed.
Reed’s family said this isn’t justice.
“At 21, he’ll be able to come out. You killed my son. My son was 32. Why do you have the right to get to start your life over with a sealed record like this never happened?” Donavon’s mother Veronica Reed said.
“All that crap that that’s a juvenile, that’s a joke,” added Donavon’s father Larry Reed.
Donavon’s parents both agree that the juvenile should have been tried as an adult.
“I can never forget. I cry every night. I see my son in the graveyard. They’re going to tell us he’s only got 6 years? This is a joke,” Larry said.
He said that the juvenile laws in Louisiana need to be changed.
“They need to put these children who killed somebody like what he did my son, he should never see light. He should be up there in Angola and can never come home,” he added.
Larry and Veronica told KLFY News 10 that the trial was a nightmare, as he and his wife learned more details about how Donavon was killed. He said that the juvenile admitted to shooting Donavon but the bullet was meant for someone else. The teen also testified that he bought the gun on Facebook.
Donavon’s father said he doesn’t believe the 14-year-old will learn anything only being in jail until he’s 21.
“I couldn’t believe it, how he felt. I saw him at the courthouse laughing. This was really nothing to him,” Larry said.
While he said there are many to blame in this situation, including the teen’s parents, police, and the judge, Larry told News 10 that he believes the system is what ultimately failed them.
“We have nobody to blame but the system, the men in Baton Rouge,” he told News 10.
Donavon’s parents both said the teen getting juvenile life doesn’t give them peace, closure, or justice.
“All I can say is it’s a slap in the face. That’s all I can say. Until they change this juvenile law, we’re going to have trouble,” the heartbroken father added.