WICHITA — A teenager accused of killing another teen at Towne East Square last year will be tried as an adult.
Te’Bryis Robinson, 17, is charged with first-degree murder and unlawful use of a weapon in killing 14-year-old TrenJ’vious Hutton at the east Wichita mall on March 18. The shooting happened on a Friday inside the mall located at 7700 East Kellogg.
Wichita police said Hutton was involved in a fight involving several people when a suspect pulled out a handgun and fired multiple shots before fleeing.
Hutton, a student at Heights High School, died at the scene. The then-16-year-old Robinson was arrested for second-degree murder. Police said the crime was gang-related.
Sedgwick County District Attorney Marc Bennett said the week after the shooting that he would seek to charge the suspect as an adult. A motion for an adult prosecution hearing was originally set for July 11, 2022. It continued until September 6, then to January 24, and again until today, March 14.
The change is significant for Robinson’s charges. Wichita defense attorney Dan Monnat says “this juvenile is 17 years old, so he could be treated in a juvenile detention facility until he’s 23, so it’s a maximum six-year sentence. On the other hand, if this juvenile is instead treated as an adult, he is exposed to a possible sentence of life in prison.”
Monnat says it’s uncommon for a teen to be tried as an adult, and even rare for a defense attorney to waive the right to an evidential hearing and accept the state’s request.
He says that could mean Robinson’s lawyer is talking with the DA’s office. “It could be that there has been some thorough, caring attorney who has counseled with the juvenile and hatched some kind of plea agreement of which this is one component.”
Robinson’s first appearance is scheduled for March 28.
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