Memphis, TN – Eduardo Marmolejo, the 17-year-old student accused of stabbing his teacher to death, has been ordered to undergo a mental evaluation.
On Wednesday, 49-year-old Suzette York was found stabbed to death in a classroom at Memphis Junior Academy, a Seventh-day Adventist school of less than 100 students.
Shortly after, police had Marmolejo in custody and charged with York’s murder. He told police that he did not like York and had planned on killing her since May, ever since he found out he would be the only 11th-grade student at the school.
York had lobbied the school should expand past their current kindergarten through 10th-grades; saying it was important to keep students in a Christian setting. The school board agreed and voted last spring to extend classes through the 11th grade.
Marmolejo was the first and only student to begin his junior year there and he was not happy about it at all. One of his teachers said Marmolejo was left behind because several of his classmates had transferred to another school to finish their junior and senior years. The teenager told police he killed York on Wednesday because he knew he would be alone with her.
While in court, Marmolejo showed little emotion, although he reportedly flashed a quick smile at a court officer. However his parents were visibly upset. His father occasionally buried his face in his hands while his mother constantly wiped away tears. When asked by the judge if he understood the seriousness of the charges against him, Marmolejo said that he did.
Magistrate Sheldon McCall ordered Marmolejo to remain at the Juvenile Detention Center. The judge also ordered a mental-health evaluation to be conducted by Juvenile Court professionals.
Memphis Defense Attorney Steffen Schreiner says the evaluation is key in determining how to charge the case, “Certainly a psychological evaluation as to the maturity or immaturity or any brain aspects that might explain this behavior you typically don’t expect from a 17-year old.”
In case you skimmed through Schreiner’s comment, they’re going to use the results to determine if Marmolejo should be tried as an adult.
York had been affiliated with the school since the late ’90s. She taught science and math before becoming principal in 2008. ”She was a person who was very much involved with the students,” said a former student of York’s. “She cared deeply about the development of her students.” York is survived by her husband.
Before his Facebook page got locked down, it showed a teen who liked war games (oh noes!) who posted about his school on Monday. “School sucks,” he wrote.Tags: Crime, Eduardo Marmolejo, Memphis Junior Academy, Murder, school, Stabbing, student, Suzette York, teacher, teen, Tennessee