CASTLE ROCK, Colo. (CBS4) – One of the teens accused of plotting a murderous attack on a high school in Highlands Ranch has agreed to plead guilty to solicitation to commit murder and one count of conspiracy to commit murder.
The deal stipulates a three-year sentence to the Department of Youth Corrections with credit of one year for time served for Brooke Higgins.
On Tuesday, Higgins, 17, one of two teens behind the alleged plot, accepted a plea deal. The judge will have to sign off on the deal.
Higgins and another teen have been accused of threatening students and staff at Mountain Vista High School.
Sienna Johnson and Higgins were both 16 years old when they were arrested in December 2015 for an alleged murder plot at their Highlands Ranch school.
Higgins was accused of plotting to kill students and staff at the high school, even writing about how she wished she could have taken part in the April 1999 Columbine High School attacks.
Prosecutors charged the teenagers as adults and the defense attorneys asked for a reverse transfer — they argued the teens should be tried as juveniles where the punishment is far less severe.
Eighteenth Judicial District Attorney George Brauchler spoke after the hearing, saying he believes the agreement is the best outcome.
“This to me provided us the greatest opportunity to get the most public safety, justice and frankly rehabilitation possible for this particular defendant,” he said.
As part of the deal, Higgins pleaded guilty to the adult charge of conspiracy to commit murder and a juvenile charge of solicitation to commit murder.
The adult charge will come with a four years of intense supervision in addition to the three-year sentence to the Department of Corrections. If all is completed successfully Higgins will have little left on her record.
“At the end of the day she will be in a position to close the book on this case and put it behind her and continue to progress forward as an adult,” Brauchler said.
Higgins’ attorneys claim that her crime was a “thought crime” at best. She was charged as an adult with conspiracy to commit first-degree murder under extreme indifference and conspiracy to commit first-degree murder after deliberation.
Higgins’ sentencing has been set for Feb. 8, 2017.