The California attorney general's office is asking a judge to consider whether a 14-year-old boy should be tried as an adult for the death of his younger sister, who was found by her mother last week in her bedroom at their Northern California home.
The boy, who hasn't been identified because he is a minor, was charged with one count of murder in juvenile court, but he denied the charge, according to the state attorney general's office.
Prosecutors filed a motion asking the judge to determine whether the boy is unfit for the juvenile court system and should be tried as an adult. A court date for the next hearing has not been set.
The attorney general's office took over the case after the Placer County district attorney's office was forced to recuse itself from handling the incident.
Citing an "emotional connection" to the Wood family, the district attorney's office said prosecuting the case would be a conflict of interest.
"Given our strong emotional connection to Mr. Wood and his family it is legally impossible for us to prosecute this case," the district attorney's office said in a statement. "With the Attorney General handling the criminal case, it will allow our office to focus on giving Mr. Wood and his family the same love and support that he has given to crime victims during his 18 years of service to our county."
Ashley was found at 10:47 a.m., dead from blunt force trauma to the head in the Monument Springs Drive home, Rocklin Police Capt. Lon Milka told KXTV. With the help of the California Highway Patrol and Roseville police, detectives found the boy in a field about a mile from the home.
The boy was arrested and taken to the Placer County Probation Juvenile Detention Facility.
Police declined to say what weapon was used in the attack, and a motive for the killing has not been determined.
Ashley was described as a talented gymnast who competed around the country.
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