Cassidy Goodson to be tried as an adult, 14-year-old could get life in prison

Today I mourn the lives of children taken far too soon, both Cassidy Goodson and her son. This whole ordeal is utterly sickening on so many levels, but what truly breaks my heart is this young woman’s future. So many questions are going unanswered and so much is at stake.

I simply cannot wrap my mind around the idea of adult and juvenile charges. There are crimes for which a person can be arrested and there are people who commit those crimes, some are adults and some are children. How does our society determine what constitutes an adult crime? Heinous or not, she is still a child. This is a 14-year-old girl who is not fully matured dealing with adult situations far beyond her understanding without adult guidance. Her parents neglect in this situation appears to be going unnoticed.

In no way do I condone killing children to avoid responsibility, but at 14 her goal was not murder, so much as it was an attempt to cover up the situation. It reminds me of when I was a kid and I would break something which I would then hide to avoid getting in trouble.

What really irks me is  how could a mother not know her 5’3 100 lbs 14-year-old was pregnant, even after multiple pregnancy tests. At 14, this young girl couldn’t drive herself to get feminine products, so the mother must have noticed that she was not asking for them. Baggy clothes or not, it’s hard to carry a baby to full-term without your friends, family or teachers noticing.

Furthermore, why was this 14-year-old girl pregnant to begin with? Was she having unprotected sex on her own free will or was she raped? Then comes the birth, which must have been extremely painful and agonizing alone in the bathroom no matter your age. It must have taken several hours, during which time the mother was alleged to be home. How did this mother not notice her child was in the bathroom an extended period of time with the water running?

Talking about safe havens for pregnant teens is completely beside the point. Here you have a completely terrified 14-year-old with a baby, sitting in her bathroom trying to solve the problem on her own. She has no means of transportation and likely no knowledge of these types of facilities. Her actions were that of a scared, immature teenager who has no understanding of  the consequences of her actions. To say she does is to say that a 14-year-old thinks and reasons like an adult. I am not saying that Cassidy Goodson does not understand that murder is illegal, or that the end of life means death, what I am saying is that she did not fully comprehend the scope of  her actions.

A National Institutes of Health study proposes that the part of the brain that restrains risky behavior, including reckless driving, and thinking skills is not fully developed until the age of 25. Yet still the young girl will be charged as an adult. Luckily her age prevents her from getting the death penalty, but it does not prevent her from getting life in prison.  If she were tried as a juvenile, the toughest sentence she could get would keep her locked up until she turned 22.

Apparently the State Attorney Jerry Hill justified his decision to try Cassidy as an adult, saying that the facts demand first-degree murder charges.  The facts demand a closer look. The facts are that this young girl should have never been pregnant to begin with, she shouldn’t have had to endure labor on the floor of her bathroom alone and she shouldn’t be locked in a prison for the rest of her life for a decision made as a child. Despite the criticism I may receive from these beliefs, I stand by them. I am disgusted and outraged. I am disgusted that two lives had to be lost, that teenagers aren’t given access to the birth control they need to prevent this from happening, and that they don’t feel safe telling someone at their school or at home what is going on.

I truly hope that in the future Infant safe haven laws are better equipped to handle teens who don’t have the transportation or means necessary to access these programs. Absteinence-only programs and schools and denying students access to birth control is not the answer. We cannot turn a blind eye to these problems and act as if they aren’t happening. It’s truly unfortunate that Cassidy Goodson may have to become the poster child for a better future for pregnant teen girls.

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10 thoughts on “Cassidy Goodson to be tried as an adult, 14-year-old could get life in prison

  1. “Heinous or not, she is still a child.”

    No she’s not. She’s a minor, but she is not a “child.” She’s a teenager. Many people her age (past and present) work, marry, and raise a family at her age. Many not only work to support themselves, but send their earnings to their parents and other family members in need.

    Too many new age parents these days are coddling their “children” so that they never grow up. So that they are selfish and lack empathy for others. Typical sociopathic behavior.

    • I don’t see very many teenagers getting married and raising children these days. When they do, it’s often in the open and they have the support necessary to raise a family. These teenagers are in an entirely different position than Cassidy Goodson.

      Her mother was clearly not coddling her daughter, in fact, her mother was blatantly disregarding her child.

      Also, did you have a clear sense of morality at 14? Are your morals still them same? I highly doubt it. You seem to have missed the portion of my article where I mention that a persons brain does not fully develop until age 25, that includes the portions of ones brain that are responsible for reasoning and decision-making.

      • “Her mother was clearly not coddling her daughter, in fact, her mother was blatantly disregarding her child.”

        How do you know that? You know nothing about her parents, yet you are quick to judge. Many pregnant women do not even “show” while they are pregnant and there are many instances where no one–teachers, parents, friends, etc., had no idea that someone they spent so much time with was actually pregnant. In fact, this is not the first instance where a teenage mother was arrested for murdering her child (when she gave birth in a bathroom in a previous case)–yet you now want to change the law as you sympathize with a sociopathic killer who cares more about her social life than the life that she brought into the world. This was the “coddling” I was referring to. Making illogical excuses for others no matter how old they are. The parents should have been instilling basic values and making sure that they know where their “children” are, but to blame the parents instead of the teenage mother who chose to kill is like new age parents blaming and yelling at the teachers for their son’s/daughter’s bad grades instead of focusing on their son or daughter’s performance (or lack thereof). THAT is coddling.

        I think it’s disturbing that your sympathy is for the 14-year-old “child” and not the real child that was actually murdered by this juvenile. A child that was not “unborn” and not a “cluster of cells,” but a living, breathing human being.

        There’s no doubt that one’s though processes and judgment can improve with age and experience, but that is irrelevant. What is relevant is whether a teenager is old enough to know right from wrong. Whether they are aware that killing another human being is right or wrong. I’m assuming that she is not mentally challenged and, thus, she has no excuse.

        “Also, did you have a clear sense of morality at 14?”

        Of course. I knew that harming others is wrong, that murder is even more atrocious, and that I am responsible for whatever lifeforms I am responsible for. So yes, if I let even the smallest animal die under my assumed care, then I knew at 14 (and much younger than that) that what I did was not only irresponsible, but WRONG–if not “evil.”

        11 and 12-year olds (who are actually children) were imprisoned for playing to roughly with smaller children and killing them–presumably accidentally. Yet, a 14-year-old garners your sympathy for no apparent reason.

        “I don’t see very many teenagers getting married and raising children these days. When they do, it’s often in the open and they have the support necessary to raise a family.”

        There was a time (which still exist for some today) where people were considered to be adults at that age and you were held to higher standards–and they proved themselves worthy of those standards. And teenagers that age are still categorized as “young adults” even now. In today’s society where 26-year-olds are still treated as children that qualify for their parents insurance benefits, it would not be ideal to hold them to these same high standards. But that does not mean that is is good to keep bringing the bar down lower and lower–where you throw out common sense and claim that a 14-year old is a “child” that doesn’t know that murder is wrong and cannot be responsible for his/her own actions when he/she harms and kills another human being–or commits ANY crime.

      • “I also do not condone simply letting this girl free. I am merely angered by the fact that they are choosing to prosecute a minor as an adult.”

        Then I stand corrected. I think that the reason why they want to try her as an adult is to ensure that she will not simply get a slap on the wrist which is often the case. Even if she is tried as an adult and has to serve jail time, there are protections for minors to insure that they will not have to serve their time in a regular prison with adults. I am sure that a “life term” is not even on the table.

      • I know the mother and Cassidy and you should not speak about things you don’t know. This is a justice system injustice and she needs to be evaluated properly. We are praying for her healing and as for the baby, he is with Jesus and the focus is on Cassidy’s recovery. I will say this was a child thinking like a child, how can I hid what I have done wrong. Guilty is what drove this not evil.

      • Tracy, unfortunately people like myself and the person who commented are only offered the information we are provided via the media. Sadly it is often bias and untrue. There are going to be a lot of opinion pieces in the coming days and weeks regarding this case and not all of them will be accurate or based in truth.

        My main intention in writing this was to express my disgust at the legal system for trying a minor as an adult. I truly hope that the family can find solace in the coming days, as this is a situation no family should have to face.

  2. First, let me be clear here. I am extremely remorseful that an innocent baby died at the hands of its own mother. I also do not condone simply letting this girl free. I am merely angered by the fact that they are choosing to prosecute a minor as an adult.

    In no way do I believe that this girl doesn’t know right from wrong, but I do believe that she doesn’t understand the scope and lasting effects of her actions at 14. Do the parents share sole blame? Of course not, but they are certainly responsible for their children until the age of 18.

    Being locked up until she is 22 is a punishment suitable to her age. To lock a 14-year-old girl up for life is absurd. If you are not legally considered an adult, you should not be tried as one. That is my main point.

    Whether or not this girls actions were evil, what her intentions were and who is to blame are simply factors in my overall point.

    • Unfortunately for this young lady, a life sentence is on the table. However, she cannot serve a mandatory life sentence without parole. This whole situation is very sad.

  3. Someone needs to get a petition started on her behalf on CHANGE.ORG (re: being tried as an adult) and try to get this dropped to juvenile court where it belongs. I’m sick and tired of hearing about young kids being tried as adults. According to Harvard Medical School many teens may have fairly advanced intellectual and reasoning ability. Recent research has shown that human brain circuitry isn’t mature until the early 20’s. Some of the last connections to be fully established are the links between the prefrontal cortex — the seat problem-solving and judgement — and the brains emotional centers.

    Get Real People, what mature adult female would try to pry a 9+ pound baby out of themselves especially with a pair of scissors….. ouch!!! I had a 8lb11oz baby, in a hospital with the aid of doctors & nurses & a few pain killers & I was still in screaming pain. My point, a mature minded woman wouldn’t hide out & go it alone, she would be getting help ASAP.

    This is a juvenile with an immature mind here, especially placing the infant in a shoe box and putting it under a pile of clothes. This is definitely the thinking of a young girl with an immature mind and in deep denial.

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