The man who plotted and carried out a mass shooting at STEM School Highlands Ranch – killing student Kendrick Castillo and wounding six students in the process – was convicted of all 46 criminal counts against him.
The Douglas County District Court jury returned its verdict June 15 against Devon Erickson, 20, after a 12-day trial before Judge Theresa Slade.
Castillo was killed and six other students were shot at the school on May 7, 2019. Two additional students in neighboring classrooms were also injured.
“May 2, 2019, was every parent’s absolute worst nightmare … I cannot imagine the terror these young students went through, being locked in a room, ambushed by two killers with murder in their hearts,” said District Attorney John Kellner. “But for all the killer wanted to be the name that was remembered, his name will be forgotten. The name that we remember in this community is Kendrick Castillo. We remember all the brave young students who sprang into action.”
He added: “This case broke our hearts. It tore at the fabric and the soul of this community. But today was a day of reckoning; today was a day of accountability. It was a day of justice. I hope this verdict is another step toward healing for this community.”
Sentencing was set for Sept. 17. The mandatory sentence in Colorado for an adult convicted of first-degree murder is life in prison without the possibility of parole.
The prosecution team consisted of Chief Deputy District Attorney George Brauchler, Chief Deputy District Attorney Christopher Gallo, Chief Deputy District Attorney Rebecca Gleason and Senior Chief Deputy District Attorney Christopher Wilcox.
“This is justice in the way the system can provide justice,” Brauchler said. “But I’m going to leave here and go home and have dinner with my kids and hug them and think about the fact that Kendrick’s parents are going to get in their car and drive to a gravesite. … We really can’t bring justice to what happened to them.”
The jury convicted Erickson of:
• 1 count of first-degree murder after deliberation
• 1 count of first-degree murder, extreme indifference
• 1 count of conspiracy to commit first-degree murder after deliberation
• 6 counts of attempted first-degree murder after deliberation
• 25 counts of attempted first-degree murder, extreme indifference
• 1 count of second-degree arson
• 1 count of conspiracy to commit second-degree arson
• 1 count of providing a handgun to a juvenile
• 1 count of third-degree burglary
• 1 count of conspiracy to commit third-degree burglary
• 1 count of theft
• 1 count of conspiracy to commit theft
• 1 count of possession of a weapon on school grounds
• 1 count of criminal mischief
• 1 count of conspiracy to commit criminal mischief
• 1 count of interference with school staff
• 1 count of reckless endangerment