HOUSTON -- A judge in the Harris County Juvenile Justice Center ruled Thursday that a 16-year-old girl, who allegedly killed her mother by stabbing her 73-times, will stand trial as an adult.
On July 16, Keri Lynn Murphy called 911 and said she and her mother, Mary Murphy, were victims of a home invasion. But homicide detectives said the evidence did not support the claim.
Within days, police focused on the daughter's friend, Zein Ahmed, who confessed to the killing. Ahmed was arrested and charged, but police soon realized he didn't do it and the charges were dropped.
“He never graduated high school,” said Anna Emmons, a Harris County prosecutor. “He may not be educated or at a maturity level to understand or to comprehend everything that was going on.”
It took several months, but now investigators believe they know what really happened.
Detectives said Mary Murphy's teenage daughter and her 20-year-old girlfriend, Rebecca Keller, stabbed her to death because she was trying to keep them apart.
Both have been charged with murder.
Until Thursday, Keri Lynn Murphy has been handled as a juvenile.
Wearing handcuffs and leg restraints, she was visibly upset when she heard the judge’s ruling to try her as an adult. So was her family. They continue to stand behind her, but would not talk with KHOU 11 News as they left the courtroom
“This was planned,” said Emmons. “It was a coldhearted execution and really that needs to be handled in the adult court.”
If convicted as a juvenile, Keri Lynn Murphy could have been sentenced to up to 40 years in prison. As an adult, she could get life.