Teen Who Kills Teacher Sentenced to 28 Years

Teen Who Kills Teacher Sentenced to 28 Years

Feb. 7, 2009
CJUS 133

On the last day of class May 26, 2000, it was a day in West Palm Beach many will probably remember for a very long time. It was the day Nathaniel Brazill took the life of a teacher. It’s hard to believe that at the age of thirteen, someone so young can have so much anger and so much rage to end a human beings life.

Nathaniel, fourteen, at the time of conviction, took his school teachers life. What in today’s society brings youth to commit such heinous crimes, such as taking your own school teachers life? Such a violent crime. What makes a thirteen year old child go to school with a gun concealed in his backpack? What thoughts were going through his mind? I began to wonder first, where exactly does a child that young get a gun?

Nathaniel testified that he did not intentionally cause harm to his school teacher, Barry Gurnow. Barry was a language teacher, and thought to be a great one by his students and peers. He’ll be missed by all in the community. What intent do you have when you walk into a classroom with a gun concealed in backpack? Personally I think Nathaniel had more problems going on that no one knew about that lead to his actions that day.

Polly Powell, Nathaniel’s mother, found his sentence of twenty eight years fair but harsh and will be appealing it. Does she blame herself for not being involved enough? The first question that came to mind was where were the parents at when Nathaniel woke up that morning and got ready for school? How did they not know he has possession of a pistol? This makes me wonder were they involved at all. Society has changed rapidly over time. What seems to drive today’s youth to commit murder? It has to have something to do with their upbringing. Or the people their surrounded by.

Nathaniel showed remorse at the time of his trial stating “he was...

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