Prosecutors drop manslaughter charges against boys in porch collapse case

Prosecutors Wednesday agreed to drop involuntary manslaughter charges against two boys involved in a porch collapse that killed another boy.

In return for dropping the more serious charge 13 year old Kareem VanCleaf and his 11 year old brother Javon agreed to plead guilty to criminal mischief. Police say the VanCleafs in October kicked out the supports of a porch at an abandoned house on Linwood Avenue. The porch collapsed on 12 year old Dwayne Gordon, killing him.

The boys’ attorney called the incident an innocent childhood mistake. Prosecutors say the mother of the victim fully supports the decision to drop the manslaughter charge. Juvenile Court Judge Dana Priesse is scheduled to sentence the boys in March.