Alyssa Bustamante, 15, has been certified as an adult and will stand trial for the murder of Elizabeth Olten, 9, of rural Cole County.
Cole County Circuit Judge Jon Beetem ruled today the crime was vicious and the state’s juvenile facilities are inadequate to deal with someone who would commit such a crime.
Law enforcement testified that Bustamante had led them to the shallow grave in the woods where Olten’s body was found two days after she went missing. One officer testified in court today that Bustamante had told investigators she did it “because she wanted to know what it felt like to kill someone.”
The grand jury indictment accuses Bustamante of killing Olten by strangling her, cutting her throat and stabbing her. She’s also charged with armed criminal action for using a knife in the attack.
The charges were shortly after Bustamante had been certified to stand trial as an adult. She’s being held in the Cole County jail with no bond.
Records show the suspect has attempted suicide in the past and has had ongoing mental evaluations.
Olten’s family members attending the hearing wore pink T-shirts with her picture.
Bustamante’s defense attorney asked the judge to let her stand trial as a juvenile, saying trying her as an adult would be a death sentence.
Olten disappeared Oct. 21, when she was on her way home from a friend’s house about a half a mile from her home.
John Marsh, KWOS, Jefferson City, contributed to this report.