Convicted school shooter Jesse Osborne, currently serving life without parole, has requested a reconsideration of his sentence, raising the possibility of eventual release.
Osborne’s attorney, Frank Eppes, argued in court that a psychological evaluation in Osborne’s case was insufficiently considered by the judge. The evaluation indicates Osborne’s violent behavior resulted from past abuse and holds potential for his rehabilitation. Eppes urged the court to provide 21-year-old Osborne a chance at redemption.
Osborne expressed his regret for his actions and apologized to the family of the child he murdered and those who were present during the incident, committing to self-improvement during his incarceration.
Jesse Osborne was 14-years-old when he shot three students and a teacher at the Townville Elementary School in South Carolina.
Contrary views were presented at the Anderson County Courthouse hearing against Osborne’s release. Speakers included a teacher who was supervising recess during the shooting, an injured student’s parent, the father of a first grader celebrating his birthday that day, the school’s principal, and superintendent. Principal Denise Fredericks, who had observed Osborne with ammunition outside the school, maintained that despite hope for his positive contributions, he should remain incarcerated due to the magnitude of his offenses. Prosecutors noted that the victim’s family opted not to speak in court but strongly opposed Osborne’s release.
Osborne is serving two life sentences after pleading guilty to all charges. He murdered his father before the school shooting, during which he drove his truck into the school fence and fired at a first-grade class, killing Jacob Hall and injuring two other students and a teacher.
Osborne’s defense posited his brain was still developing during his teenage years and presented a contrasting psychologist’s report which disputed the prosecution’s experts’ characterization of Osborne as dangerous and remorseless. Eppes proposed a new sentence structure: a 30-year minimum for murder charges, additional years for attempted murder charges, and lifetime GPS monitoring post-release, if permitted.
The judge ordered a comprehensive report from the defense’s expert and provided prosecutors 10 days to respond.