Should Mundelein Teen Be Charged as Adult in Stabbing Death of Half-Sister?

A 14-year-old Mundelein teen is accused of killing her 11-year-old half-sister after stabbing heover 30 times last week in the townhome they shared. She is currently charged with first-degree murder in juvenile court for the death of Dora Betancourt.

Source: Sydney Morning Herald
Source: Sydney Morning Herald
Lake County's top prosecutor is currently weighing whether to recommend a 14-year-old Mundelein girl who is accused of stabbing her 11-year-old sister to death be tried as an adult, according to the Chicago Tribune. 

State's Attorney Michael Nerheim told the Chicago Tribune he will be looking at the girl's age, the circumstances of the murder, public safety and the mental health and criminal history of the girl over the next several week before making his recommendation

If she was found guilty of first-degree murder as a juvenile, she could serve as little as seven years in juvenile detention but if charged and convicted as an adult, she could face between 20 to 60 years in prison, according to the Daily Herald

Children ages 15 years old or above are automatically charged as adults in Illinois for murder but since the girl is under the age of 15, the top prosecutor can decide whether or not the girl should be tried as an adult, according to the Chicago Tribune. 

The Daily Herald reports another big difference between juvenile and adult courts is that while adult criminal records are made public, juvenile records are not. 

The 14-year-old Mundelein girl is accused of stabbing her half-sister, Dora Betancourt, a fifth-grade student at St. John's Lutheran School in Libertyville, over 30 times following an argument in their home on Woodhaven Court in Mundelein the morning of Jan. 21, according to an earlier Daily Herald article. 

Police said the argument stemmed from the older sibling believing Betancourt did not appreciate all she did for her, according to CNN.

Funeral Services This Week for Dora

A funeral service for Dora Betancourt will be held at 11 a.m. Wednesday, Jan. 29, at  
 St. John’s Lutheran Church, 501 W. Park Ave. in Libertyville. 

A visitation will be held from 2 to 8 p.m. Tuesday at the Kristan Funeral Home P.C., 219 West Maple Ave. (two blocks west of Rt. 45 on Rt. 176) Mundelein, and two hours prior to services on Wednesday at St. John's Lutheran Church. 

'Mundelein Moms' Raise Funds for Funeral Costs

As of Monday evening, nearly $19,000 has been raised by a group, which is referring to itself as "Mundelein Moms," to help cover the funeral costs for Betancourt's family, according to the GoFundMe.com fund-raising page. 

"We are all very sorry for the family's loss and keep them in our prayers," according to the GoFundMe Web page. "As part of an incredible community of Mundelein Mom's we would like to come together and help support funeral expenses."

Katie Henning, a mother of four who developed the fundraising idea, said their community is embracing a "camaraderie of compassion as a result of this tragedy," according to the Chicago Tribune.  

Any funds raised above the costs of the funeral will be donated to Betancourt's family. 

TELL US in the comments section: Should the 14-year-old Mundelein teen accused of stabbing her half-sister to death be charged as an adult? Why or why not? 


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