The family of a 15-year-old Ventura boy convicted of second-degree murder in the slaying of a homeless man urged a judge Thursday to send the teen to a treatment center and not to the California Youth Authority.
But relatives of James Clark, the 58-year-old veteran beaten to death last summer, told Superior Court Judge John E. Dobroth that Rocky Mattley deserves the maximum punishment for his role in the June 30 slaying.
Mattley is the first of four teens to stand trial on murder charges. Prosecutors want him sent to the California Youth Authority, where he could be held until he turns 25. But defense lawyers fear that the boy would not receive needed counseling and educational opportunities. Dobroth is expected to rule next week.