Springfield teen pleads not guilty by insanity in brother’s death

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

Friends and family release balloons in memory of Harley Starling Thursday.

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

The 16-year-old Springfield teen charged in connection with the death of his 14-year-old brother pleaded not guilty and not guilty by reason of insanity today.

Nicholas Starling appeared in the Clark County Common Pleas court today on charges of aggravated murder, three charges of murder and two charges of tampering with evidence. His bond was set at $100,000.

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He’s been accused in the Oct. 30 beating and stabbing death of his 14-year-old brother.

Harley Starling was found dead in the boys’ Superior Avenue home. Nicholas Starling was arrested hours after police began their investigation, Clark County Prosecutor Andy Wilson said, and evidence indicates that the older brother allegedly beat Harley with a baseball bat and then stabbed him.

Last month a Clark County Juvenile Court approved moving the case to adult court, where Nicholas Starling could face life in prison without parole, Wilson said.

Clark County Public Defender Jim Marshall is representing Nicholas Starling.

“All this (not guilty by reason of insanity plea) does is it puts the court on notice that we’ll be filing paperwork asking for a mental health evaluation,” Marshall said.

He didn’t have a timeline yet for when a possible mental health evaluation might be given. Marshall declined to comment on why he was seeking a not guilty by reason of insanity plea.

Clark County Prosecutor Andy Wilson said his office will address whatever claims are raised by the defense at trial.

Nicholas Starling remains in the Clark County Jail, according to court records.