Judge finds cause that teen set fatal fire

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) -- A juvenile court judge has found probable cause that a 14-year-old boy intentionally set a fire that killed his mother.

The Commercial Appeal reports that Special Judge Dan Michael told Jonathan Ray on Wednesday that he believes the death was "premeditated and aggressive," with gasoline used to set a fire on stairs that led to his mother's second-floor bedroom.

Shelby County prosecutors have accused Ray of seeking revenge on his mother, Gwendolyn Wallace, who had punished him for misbehaving.

But Ray's attorney Robert Gowen said Ray suffers from mental illness and needs treatment, not jail.

Michael is expected to rule soon on whether Ray should be transferred to adult court. Because Ray is charged with first-degree murder, authorities have identified the juvenile in documents and in open court.


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