JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (CN) – The Missouri Attorney General says a jailed 16-year-old girl accused of murder is entitled to a free education. Attorney General Chris Koster filed a brief with the Missouri Supreme Court on Tuesday, saying Alyssa Bustamante can be educated with something as simple as a laptop computer.
Bustamante is in the Cole County jail awaiting trial for the murder of her neighbor, 9-year-old Elizabeth Olten. Prosecutors claim Bustamante killed Olten because she wanted to know how it felt to kill someone.
Bustamante is to be tried as an adult.
Cole County Sheriff Greg White argued that Bustamante has the same educational access to GED materials that other adult prisoners do.
Bustamante’s attorneys have been rebuffed three times in an attempt to further her education – twice in Cole County Circuit Court and once in the Missouri Court of Appeals.
Olten’s body was found in a wooded area outside of St. Martin’s, Mo., 10 miles west of Jefferson City.