Judge: Girl, 14, ‘active participant’ in mother’s murder

ALLENTOWN, Pa. (AP) – A judge says a 14-year-old eastern Pennsylvania girl’s “intelligence and manipulation” were crucial to the plot to have her soldier boyfriend kill her mother, which the judge called a “vicious and monstrous crime.”

Lehigh County Judge Maria Dantos issued a 37-page decision explaining why she ruled Thursday that Jamie Silvonek should be tried as an adult in the murder of 54-year-old Cheryl Silvonek.

Authorities said the victim was beaten, choked and stabbed in her SUV in March after returning from a concert with her daughter and 21-year-old Army Spc. Caleb Barnes.

Dantos said the teenager’s role “demonstrated criminal sophistication” and her “intelligence and manipulation were essential to achieving the desired goal – murder.”

Authorities have cited text messages in which they allege that Silvonek urged Barnes to kill her mother.

(Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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