Teen pleads in Wyoming murder case

Daniel Benavides (left) and Mitchell Savickas (right) appear in Wyoming District Court in connection to the shooting death of 17-year-old Isaiah Blue. (March 2, 2016)

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — A 16-year-old charged in connection to the death of a Grand Rapids teen has agreed to a plea deal.

Court documents show Daniel Benavides was in court last week and pleaded guilty to second-degree murder and felony firearm in the January shooting death of 17-year-old Isaiah Blue. Benavides also pleaded no contest to an armed robbery charge and agreed to testify against Mitchell Savickas, another suspect in the murder case.

Meanwhile, Savickas was in court Monday for the start of his trial. He’s facing seven charges, including open murder.

A photo of Isaiah Blue at a vigil on Feb. 1, 2016.
A photo of Isaiah Blue at a vigil on Feb. 1, 2016.

Savickas rejected a plea deal and — despite the judge’s suggestion not to — has decided to represent himself during the trial.

Jury selection began Monday and opening statements are expected Tuesday morning.

Blue was shot multiple times after getting off a Rapid bus near 44th Street SW in Wyoming on Jan. 27.

Bryshaun Scott, 15, previously testified against Savickas, saying the three of them spotted Blue — who Savickas knew from a previous stint in juvenile detention — on a Rapid bus and followed him and two other young men off the bus. Scott said Savickas fired the shots that killed Blue.

Savickas’ girlfriend testified that the shooting was supposed to be a robbery.

The Kent County Prosecutor’s Office dismissed an armed robbery charge against Scott following his testimony.

Benavides is expected to be sentenced on Aug. 3.

Officers in Wyoming surrounded a home with two people of interest in connection to a homicide inside. (Jan. 28, 2016)
Officers in Wyoming surrounded a home with two people of interest in connection to a homicide inside. (Jan. 28, 2016)

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