West Point boy pleads guilty in stabbing deaths of younger brothers

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FARMINGTON, Utah -- A West Point teenager pleaded guilty Wednesday to murdering his two younger adopted brothers in their home more than a year ago.

FOX 13 News has a policy of not naming juveniles accused of crimes, but after pleading guilty to one murder count in adult court, we have now identified 16-year-old Aza Vidinhar.

Vidinhar will serve time in both the juvenile system and adult prison in a plea deal that isn’t unprecedented but is unusual and unique, attorneys say.

The deal is meant to balance public safety with the hope of rehabilitating a troubled minor.

Vidinhar walked into a Farmington courtroom Wednesday morning shackled and wearing a blue sweatshirt. His parents cried as he said he was guilty.

"It's a tough day for him, he didn't want his family to have to go through the hearings, and I think he's made real progress in trying to grasp what he's done," said defense attorney Todd Utzinger.

Vidinhar first pleaded guilty in juvenile court to murdering his 10-year-old brother, Alex, then entered the same plea in adult court for killing his 4-year-old brother Benjie. It's a case Davis County deputies will never forget. The 16-year-old slashed and stabbed the boys multiple times in the family's West Point home.

Gene Kennedy: "What was the motive?"
Davis County Attorney Troy Rawlings: "Don’t know."
Gene Kennedy: "It never came clear as the investigation continued?"
Troy Rawlings: I'm not going to talk about the facts and details and specifics of this case."

The night of the murder, cops picked up Vidinhar on a Layton road wearing bloodied clothes. The courts later suppressed his reported confession, saying Davis County investigators illegally interrogated him. For months, under the radar, attorneys on both sides have been working on a plea deal, which was reached Wednesday.

"It's a somber day, but we think the attorneys on both sides have tried to come together and reach a resolution that will give Aza an opportunity to get treatment and still protects the state's interest in having society remain safe until we know how well he does," Utzinger said.

The teen will receive counseling in the juvenile system and stay there until he's 21, then transfer to adult prison, serving potentially 15 years to life.

"If he goes directly to the adult system now it's not in his best rehabilitation interests," Rawlings added. "If we keep him in the juvenile system as long as we can, that might pose less of a risk to society than if we just put him in the adult system now."

The Vidinhar family wouldn't comment, but the teen's lawyer said the parents are satisfied with this deal.

The Davis County Sheriff's office said it's also relieved the family doesn't have to relive the grisly details in a trial. Ultimately, it's up to the Board of Pardons and 15 to life is only recommendation. Vidinhar could be spend the rest of his life in prison, be released by age 30, or possibly sooner depending on his behavior and whether he can be rehabilitated.

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9 comments

  • Patriot

    If the boy please guilty, how can it be an alleged murder? Was the father allegedly in Alabama? Or allegedly in the military? Political correctness is a killer!

    • Cartman

      They get in the habit of saying “alleged.” But, yes, now that he’s been convicted it’s no longer merely “alleged.”

    • Beer Wench

      Correct spelling helps too…… Might check yourself before you wreck yourself “Patriot”

  • robin

    Folks, please keep this family in your prayers. They are a good family and hurting right now. So many times hate and anger show up as comments without folks knowing all of the facts.

    • Trish Ramirez

      All the facts? A little psychopath brutally killed his young siblings, there are the facts.

      The why or the meds or lack thereof don’t change a single thing, and of COURSE the family is hurting – their evil child murdered his two younger brothers. Of COURSE they are hurting.

      That doesn’t change the fact that this kid got off WAY too lightly – he should have gotten life with no parole. His little brothers certainly won’t get a chance at freedom 15 years from now – they’re dead and their blood is on his hands.

      This may be a good family, I’m sure that many families of evil murdering drains on society are good – that doesn’t mean this kid should ever breathe free air again.

      • Cartman

        He got an adult sentence, Trish. When his juvie sentence is done he moves to the big house. So relax.

        But you’re right: The kid is an unredeemable monster. Anyone who says otherwise should either volunteer to let him babysit their kids, or shut their hypocritical mouths. This has nothing to do with his family. “Good” or “bad”, their son is a vicious psychopath.

      • Trish Ramirez

        I realize he’s going to be in prison for a long, long time and that he’s going to be doing adult prison time, too. I just think that he should not have had the possibility of parole given the heinousness of his crimes. I don’t think any amount of time in prison is going to ‘rehabilitate’ him in any way and I believe he will always be a threat to those around him.

        But you can’t win them all.

  • citizen

    Juvenile offenders can’t be sentenced to life without parole because of a SCOTUS decision a year or two ago. What qualifies either one of you to label this kid a psychopath? Do either one of you have a PhD in anything?

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