Bresha Meadows, the 15-year-old accused of killing her abusive father, has plead "true" to involuntary manslaughter, Cleveland.com reports. Under the deal, she will serve a six-month sentence at a mental health facility. Her total sentence will be a year and one day with time served.
Meadows was arrested in July 2016 and charged with aggravated murder for allegedly shooting her father, Jonathan Meadows, in the head while he slept. Bresha’s mother, Brandi Meadows, and other family members said that Jonathan Meadows had been physically and emotionally abusing the family for decades. Bresha's attorneys had previously argued that the shooting was an act of self-defense.
“In the 17 years of our marriage he has cut me, broke my ribs, fingers, the blood vessels in my hand, my mouth, blackened my eyes. I believe my nose was broken,” Brandi Meadows said in a 2011 police report. “If he finds us, I am 100 percent sure he will kill me and the children.”
Bresha's case has garnered international attention and supporters have been organizing to gain her freedom since her incarceration in July 2016. Following the plea deal offer on May 8, the #FreeBresha Campaign issued a statement on their website. "We maintain that being forced to be at a facility is not freedom and it is not care," the statement reads. "Bresha’s plea deal does nothing to transform the systemic failures that led to her imprisonment."
A petition calling for Bresha's release, created by the Bresha Meadows Freedom Campaign, has been signed 29,616 times as of this writing.
On Monday, supporters gathered outside of the Trumbull County Juvenile Court, holding signs that said "Free Bresha." The 15-year-old will remain in a juvenile detention facility until July 29, when she will be transferred to a state-run mental health facility in Shaker Heights, Ohio to serve another six months of her sentence.