Jamarion Lawhorn found guilty in playground murder trial

Posted at 8:57 AM, Sep 04, 2015
and last updated 2015-09-04 08:57:38-04

13-year-old Jamarion Lawhorn

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. - Jamarion Lawhorn was found  guilty Friday of first-degree murder in the killing of Connor Verkerke on a Kentwood playground.

Lawhorn, 13, was charged as an adult with stabbing the 9-year-old last August.  He is the youngest convicted murderer in Kent County history.

"It's my son. He's a baby. He's charged as an adult but ya know at the end of the day he was still born March 14th, 2002. He's still a kid," Anita Lawhorn, Jamarion's mother, said.  "I understand the severity of the case, but he's not an adult and I know he has to be punished for his actions and I do not believe he should get an adult sentence."

The jury delivered their verdict following three days of testimony.

Prosecutors have presented their case that Lawhorn planned on killing someone for a long time.  The defense said that Lawhorn killed to get out of a home that included abuse and neglect on the part of his parents.

Lawhorn will be sentenced at a later date.

Connor Verkerke, 9.