All statements including the confession the alleged Marshall County High School shooter Gabe Parker made to police will remain part of the case record per an order filed this afternoon by Marshall Circuit Judge Jamie Jameson.
Jameson concluded law enforcement did not violate the statute which requires immediate notification of parents when a minor has been arrested and further stated even if a violation of that statute had occurred, grounds do not exist to suppress Parker’s statements. The court further finds Parker’s Miranda rights were honored, his statements were voluntarily given without coercion and that his right to counsel was not violated.
The court, after reviewing the facts and testimony from the Aug. motion hearing, determined law enforcement’s efforts to contact Parker’s parents “began as soon as practically could be expected.” Within less than an hour of Parker’s arrest, the order notes, law enforcement arranged for one officer to locate Parker’s mother at the high school and sent two more to Parker’s home—both his mother and stepfather were notified of the arrest just more than an hour after it occurred.
“Given the chaotic nature of the day, the time frame in which notification occurred was not only legally sufficient, but commendable,” the order reads in part. “The defense addresses this matter as if notification to the parents must occur the moment a juvenile is taken into custody, regardless of the circumstance surrounding the event that lead to his arrest. Here, agencies from across western Kentucky responded to an incident involving hundreds of high school students, which lead to the death of two of those students and injury to many others.”
Full coverage of this story will be available in the Oct. 15 edition of The Tribune-Courier.