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Overland Park mom upset teen accused of killing her son will be released on house arrest

Updated: 10:27 PM, Sep 03, 2019 By: Ariel Rothfield

Ben Workman

OVERLAND PARK, Kan. — A Johnson County teenager charged with first-degree murder in the shooting death of another teenager earlier this year in Overland Park will be put on house arrest as she awaits trial.

The 17-year-old girl is charged with murder in connection with the fatal shooting of Ben Workman, who was shot in the head in his apartment. Two men — Raymond T. Cherry, 24, and Alan M. Hicks, 21 — also were charged in Workman’s homicide.

“It makes no sense,” Ben’s mother, Amy Workman, told 41 Action News of the house-arrest arrangement. “I thought I was having a heart attack.”
Amy received a phone call from her victim advocate about the Aug. 21, 2019, ruling after the judge in the case decided that the 17-year-old, who is pregnant, would stay in custody until she delivered her child.

After she gives birth, according to the judge, she will be allowed to be on house arrest with a GPS monitoring device.

Several attorneys 41 Action News spoke with called the ruling is a “rare decision.”

“In a murder case, more often than not, (defendants) are not out on bond,” criminal defense attorney John Picerno, who is not affiliated with the case, said. “In a murder one case, that’s even rarer.”

According to Picerno, judges have “wide latitude” when it comes to making such decisions. They typically will factor whether a defendant is a flight risk or a risk to the community.

“Things are much different in juvenile court, where the goal there is typically rehabilitation as opposed to more punishment, more severe sanctions in adult court,” he said.

The 17-year-old is considered a juvenile in Kansas, but prosecutors have indicated that they will seek to try her as an adult.

Ben “thought of other people before himself, he really did and these guys took my child from me,” Amy said. “They took my future grandchildren away from me. I don’t get to share anymore ‘I love you mom’ or hugs or any of that.”