Madison School Shooter Pleads Guilty To Attempted Murder Charges

Apr 28, 2016

File image of James Austin Hancock at his initial court appearance in March.
Credit Tana Weingartner / WVXU

James Austin Hancock was back in a Butler County juvenile courtroom Thursday. The 15-year-old pleaded guilty to four counts of attempted murder and one count of inducing panic following a Feb. 29 shooting at Madison Jr/Sr High School.

As part of the plea deal, four counts of felonious assault were dismissed.

Judge Ronald Craft has ordered a pre-sentence investigation. It is to include a psychological evaluation. Hancock, who was 14 at the time of the shooting, would serve time in a juvenile facility but could be transferred to adult prison at the age of 21 to serve any remainder.

Sentencing is set for June 6 at 2:30 p.m.

What Happened

Authorities say Hancock entered the Jr/Sr high school cafeteria on the morning of Feb. 29 and shot two students. Two others were injured. He fled but was apprehended just outside the school. He was charged March 1 with charged with two counts of attempted murder, two counts of felonious assault, inducing panic, and making terrorist threats, all felonies.