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Arrest warrant issued for 12-year-old alleged killer driver


On Wednesday the boy – whose identity is automatically suppressed under state law – was scheduled to appear before the District Court.Prosecutors had filed an application to have his bail revoked ahead of his trial, which is scheduled to begin in the second week of May.However, the boy did not attend court to answer his bail, and Judge Heath Barklay issued a warrant for his arrest.It is not the first time the boy has failed to attend court – a hearing in November, scheduled for 45 minutes, was cancelled after hearing he had “gone missing”.A 12 year-old boy is being investigated at a crash at Whyalla.The boy has pleaded not guilty to one count each of causing death, and of causing harm, by dangerous driving.The charges arise from an incident at Jubilee Park, Whyalla Stuart, in July 2020 when a Holden Commodore lost control and rolled into scrub.One of its passengers, aged 20, died of his injuries while a second passenger 11, suffered multiple limb injuries.Initially, the case against the boy – who sustained only minor injuries – was heard in the Youth Court.His lawyers argued the case should not proceed at all, saying he is too young to have capacity to have legally committed the crime.Prosecutors persisted, however, and were successful in their application to have the matter tried in the adult jurisdiction of the District Court.Prior to 2017, judges were obliged to sentence child offenders under the terms of youth justice – prioritising care, correction and guidance over penalty – even in adult courts.However, former Attorney-General John Rau SC introduced laws allowing juveniles to be sentenced as adults in order to “come into line with mainstream opinion”.That prompted renewed scrutiny of the age of criminal liability, with advocates calling for it to be raised from 10 years to 14 years.In January, Commissioner for Children and Young People Helen Ms Connolly said South Australia was making “slow but positive progress” against United Nations benchmarks.

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