Delaware Supreme Court overturns conviction in fatal school attack

 Students gather outside Howard High following the death of Amy Joyner-Francis in April 2016. (File/WHYY)

Students gather outside Howard High following the death of Amy Joyner-Francis in April 2016. (File/WHYY)

The Delaware Supreme Court has overturned the criminally negligent homicide conviction of a girl in the fatal beating of a 16-year-old at a high school in 2016.

In its ruling released Thursday, the court ruled the girl couldn’t have foreseen the attack would cause 16-year-old Amy Inita Joyner-Francis to die from cardiac arrest.

The News Journal of Wilmington reports the girl was 17 when a judge found her guilty of criminally negligent homicide and third-degree criminal conspiracy last year. The conspiracy conviction stands; it wasn’t appealed.

Joyner-Francis died after a violent encounter with the girl and others in a Howard High School of Technology restroom. According to state Medical Examiner Office testimony, the fight exacerbated a pre-existing heart condition leading to Joyner-Francis’s death.

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