Kennewick Kidnapping Teen Will Be Tried as Adult
Billy J. Underwood, one of two teens accused of assaulting and kidnapping an 86-year-old Kennewick woman, stuffing her in the trunk of her car, and subjecting her to what prosecutors called cruel and unusual punishment, will go on trial as an adult.
Benton County Superior Court Judge Robert Swisher said Underwood will be tried as an adult because aggravating circumstances show the crime was deliberately cruel. Underwood's accomplice, 16-year-old and grandson of the woman, Dyllan K. Martin, is already slated for adult trial because he is 16. The woman, Hazel Abel, had dirt thrown in her face, was knocked down and stuffed in the trunk of her car by the two.
They had apparently been planning for some time to steal her car. Their original plan was to dump her in a rural area, hoping she would die from exposure. They also considered setting fire to the car with her inside to destroy evidence.
Abel was able to free her hands and escape from the trunk of the car as the boys drove to Portland where they had stopped at a Walmart. She got free and got help. The two boys were arrested a short time later. The crime spree had begun November 2.