Teen pleads guilty to murder for Middletown shooting death

A 15-year-old boy pleaded guilty to murder today in Butler County Juvenile Court for the shooting death of Michael Stewart II in Middletown in October. LAUREN PACK/STAFF
A 15-year-old boy pleaded guilty to murder today in Butler County Juvenile Court for the shooting death of Michael Stewart II in Middletown in October. LAUREN PACK/STAFF

A 15-year-old boy has admitted guilt for his part of the shooting death of a Middletown man in October at his Ninth Avenue home.

Butler County prosecutors requested the teen’s case be transferred to adult court, but in exchange for the plea, the case will remain in juvenile court. The charges of burglary and robbery against the teen were also dismissed when he entered the plea “true” to murder on Friday before Visiting Butler County Juvenile Court Judge Thomas Lipps.

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The teen is one of three people charged in the death of Michael Stewart II on Oct. 12. Cameron Kyles, 18, is charged with aggravated murder, aggravated robbery, aggravated burglary, felonious assault and having weapons under disability. Camron Pawlowski, 17, is charged with murder, aggravated robbery, aggravated burglary, felonious assault and having weapons under disability.

The charges against both include specifications that they were allegedly part of a criminal gang. Both cases are pending in common pleas court after Pawlowski’s case was bound over to adult court.

According to Middletown police and facts of the case read in court, the 15-year-old conspired with others to steal marijuana and money from Stewart.

The juvenile and others went to the Stewart residence with a loaded gun and “(the 15-year-old) went into 812 Ninth Ave. to see if Michael Stewart was inside his house alone,” according to the complaint.

After leaving the residence, the teen met with another suspect and gave him the “OK,” according to the complaint.

“I’m guilty,” the teen told the judge when asked for his plea. He also told the judge he was in school until his arrest.

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“(My grades) wasn’t the best, but I was trying. I admit it, I was slacking,” he said.

The teen’s grandmother, who has custody, cried in court. The boy’s father was also present.

Sentencing was set by Lipps for March 4. The boy could be sentenced to the Ohio Department of Youth Services until up to his 21st birthday.

Police say Pawlowski drove the 15-year-old and Kyles to the Stewart residence and parked in an alley. Pawlowski gave Kyles the gun, according to police. Evidence, including guns and a plastic bag of bullets, were found and seized by police at and outside Pawlowski’s Middletown residence.

Detectives say Stewart’s shooting is part of ongoing gang activity. Kyles and Pawlowski are believed to be part of the Road Runner gang that has been involved in shootings and homicides in the city in recent years.

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