A 17-year-old boy was ordered Tuesday to spend at least two years in lock up with the state's Department of Youth Services.
Cody Ramsey, found delinquent of complicity to robbery and complicity to aggravated robbery, could remain in custody until age 21, Lucas County juvenile court Judge Connie Zemmelman ruled.
The Ramsey youth, who appeared with his mother and father, said little during the morning court appearance. His mother, Barb Ramsey, wept; his father, Steve Ramsey, shook his head several times.
The teen is accused of being the “pivotal person” in orchestrating two robberies, one of which led to the April 29 death of Nathaniel Phillips, 20, of Toledo, inside a West Toledo apartment on Twin Oaks Drive. Michael Kohlhofer, 20, of Holland, was also shot during the incident.
A second 17-year-old boy was allegedly set up by the Ramsey youth and then robbed by another teen, Levi Jackson, 17, of Holland, who will be tried as an adult.
Prosecutor Lori Olender, who oversees the the juvenile division, said if the Ramsey youth was not involved in the crimes they were “much less likely to happen” and that both robberies were planned.
The teen was originally also charged with murder, but it was dropped after he signed an “iron-clad cooperation agreement” to testify against the Jackson youth and Antonio Taylor, 19, of Holland.
The Jackson youth and Mr. Taylor are each charged with two counts of aggravated robbery and one count of murder; Mr. Taylor is also charged with one count of felonious assault.
Ms. Olender said in court that on April 28 the Ramsey youth invited David Wood to a house on Park Lane in Toledo and, when the Wood youth arrived, he was robbed at gunpoint, allegedly by the Jackson youth, of marijuana and cash.
The next day, the Ramsey youth spent $175 to buy marijuana at the Twin Oaks apartment and allegedly told the Jackson youth and Mr. Taylor that the people in the town home had cash and drugs.
After the Twin Oaks robbery, the two suspects allegedly went to the Ramsey youth and the three split the take.
Prior to sentencing, a victim advocate read a letter written by Mr. Phillips' mother Bridgett Holland.
In the brief letter, Ms. Holland asked the judge to "do the right thing."
Judge Zemmelman noted that the Ramsey youth did not have a prior criminal history, but that did not excuse his involvement with the two robberies.
The judge said she was "troubled" by stories of young people with guns.
“You're either going to get killed, someone else is going to be killed, or you're going to end up in prison,” she said. “ … I don't think you're a bad person, but you've done some bad things.”
Contact Taylor Dungjen at: firstname.lastname@example.org, 419-724-6054, or on Twitter @taylordungjen.