BOYS, 8 AND 9, RELEASED IN KILLING OF GUAM GIRL

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HAGATNA, Guam (Pacific Daily News, April 29) - Two boys who
allegedly beat a 10-year-old girl to death have been released from the
Department of Youth Affairs, according to the victim's mother.

"What kind of message are we sending our children?"
said Lou Guzman, whose daughter, Regina May, died last month from complications
from injuries she allegedly sustained during the beating. "Who is paying
for my daughter's death?"

DYA Director Chris Duenas yesterday confirmed the boys -- ages 8
and 9 -- were released and said the release was a decision of the Superior Court
of Guam.

"If the law is going to do this, and release them ... then
what are we showing our kids?" Lou Guzman asked. "That it's OK ... so
long as you are a minor because you are only going to get a slap on the wrist
and a week and a half at DYA?"

Attorney General Douglas Moylan said he could not discuss
specifics of the case because it is being handled in the juvenile and family
court.

Moylan, however, said an investigation into the incident
continues. He has said the boys' parents can be held responsible in connection
with the death.

On Feb. 21, Regina Guzman and her sisters were riding their
bicycles on their way home from school in Agat when words were exchanged between
her and the boys, according to Pacific Daily News files.

Four boys, ages 6 to 9, allegedly began hitting her back and
stomach with their fists and elbows, police have said. The girl's sisters
rescued her from further assault and took her home, but they did not tell their
parents about the incident, files state. She died March 19 after suffering a
ruptured colon that infected her blood system, files state.

After the girl's death, the four boys were taken into custody.
The 6- and 7-year-old boys were released to their parents.

"I want to find out why did they release them? Just because
they are young, just because they are minors, the laws are protecting them. What
about Regina?" Lou Guzman asked.

The boys lived within walking distance of the Guzmans, who moved
to the Agat housing area last year. Lou Guzman said the boy's family has since
moved away.

April 29, 2003

Pacific Daily News: www.guampdn.com

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