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Accused Idaho Teen Blames Stressful Environment for Family Murder

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COEUR D’ALENE, Idaho (AP) — A 14-year-old boy accused of killing his father and younger brother in Coeur d’Alene cited the stress of having a disabled child in the household when asked to explain his actions.

Eldon Gale Samuel III is being charged as an adult in the killing of his 46-year-old father, Eldon Samuel Jr., and his 13-year-old brother, Jonathan Samuel, on March 24. Magistrate Judge Barry Watson recapped testimony from a closed preliminary hearing during another court session on Friday.

The Spokesman-Review reports that Samuel initially was charged with first-degree murder in both deaths. However, Watson says he was changing the charge to second-degree murder in the father’s death after the younger Samuel said his father abused him. The judge says there’s a stronger case for premeditation in the brother’s death.

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