LONDON – A teenager who admitted he tried to kill a 6-year-old boy by pushing him from an observation deck on the 10th floor in a shocking attack at London’s Tate Modern museum last year was sentenced to life in prison, but he must serve his sentence. at least 15 years by a British court on Friday.
Jonty Bravery, 18, of Ealing in West London, pleaded guilty to one count of attempted murder in December, avoiding a potentially lengthy trial, at which point he detailed his intention to kill the boy, a stranger to him. , to appear on the news.
In Friday’s ruling, Judge Maura McGowan said that although Bravery must serve at least 15 years of his sentence, he may never be released.
“You are and will remain a danger to the public,” Judge McGowan said as Bravery listened to the verdict on video, adding that he had “a very serious mental disorder and a personality disorder.”
Deanna Heer, a prosecutor, told the court Thursday that Bravery had planned to attack someone for months, preferably a woman or a child, and her web browser history showed that she had been investigating ways to kill.
The prosecution told the court that on August 4, 2019, Mr. Bravery left the care home in which he lived and traveled to Tate Modern, where he saw the boy and quickly picked him up and threw him over bars. without a doubt.
Ms. Heer said that Mr. Bravery did this “to prove a point” to those who said he did not have a mental health problem, and that he wanted it to be in the news so that everyone, especially his parents, could see ” what a mistake it wasn’t to put him in the hospital. “
Mr. Bravery, who was present in court via video link, at one point pulled the white shirt up to his eyes, hiding his face behind it as the prosecution described his actions.
Dr. Joanna Dow, a forensic psychiatrist who works at Broadmoor Hospital in south-east England where Mr. Bravery is being held, said she has a number of defining characteristics of psychopathy, and has autism spectrum and personality disorders.
The observation deck at Tate Modern, an art museum on the south bank of the River Thames, is a popular tourist attraction, drawing visitors eager to see a 360-degree view of London. After the episode, the museum was briefly closed.
The victim of the attack, a French boy who was on vacation with his family in London, survived after landing on the museum’s fifth-floor ceiling, but suffered life-changing injuries, including several broken bones and a brain injury.
“The act committed by this individual is unthinkable,” the boy’s parents said in a statement that was read in court on Thursday.
Prosecutor Emma V. Jones, speaking in December, said the “devastating and shocking incident” had “changed the life of the young Bravery victim and her family forever.” She said the boy had survived the fall was “extraordinary”.
The boy remains in hospital for more than nine months after the attack, but is making progress, his parents said last month in a message posted on a GoFundMe page about his medical costs.
“Our son now only has his two boot-shaped splints and a splint on his left arm that he wears only at night,” the message said, detailing how he spent his days sitting in a molded seat in his wheelchair.
He is also speaking, “syllable by syllable.”
“We don’t always understand everything he says, especially when he’s tired, but he expresses himself more and more,” they added. “There is still a long way to go, but we are holding on.”
On Friday, Ms. McGowan, the judge, said the injuries Mr. Bravery had caused were horrible. “You almost killed a 6-year-old boy,” he said. “Her life will never be the same.”
Iliana Magra reported from London and Elian Peltier reported from Paris.