Published November 05. 2008 4:00AM Updated December 11. 2009 5:45PM
The 15-year-old boy accused of serving as a lookout during a botched robbery that ended with the stabbing death of Kyle Sheets aboard a Mystic boat Sept. 26 has been appointed a special public defender and a guardian for his court proceedings.
Bruce Grisafe III of Salem is charged with felony murder, conspiracy to commit first-degree robbery and criminal liability for acts of another and will be tried as an adult due to the seriousness of the charges. He is being held on $250,000 bond.
Grisafe will be represented by special public defender Sebastian DeSantis. Attorney Bernard Steadman will serve as his guardian ad litem.
Sometimes a parent serves as the guardian in court cases, but Judge Susan B. Handy said she was appointing Steadman because Grisafe had been the subject of a custody proceeding.
Grisafe’s mother, Brenda Langley, stood with her son during his court appearance Wednesday and was allowed to hug and kiss him before he was taken back to the courthouse lockup.
Grisafe is a half-brother to 17-year-old Christopher Green, who is accused of boarding the Crucible with Christopher Allen, 27, in an attempt to rob Kyle Sheets. Green told police that Allen and Sheets fought and that Allen stabbed Sheets with a serrated knife.
A fourth defendant, Bryan Sutton, is also charged. Like Grisafe, he is acccused of acting as a lookout while Green and Allen boarded the boat.
Grisafe’s next court appearance is Nov. 14. Under state law, he is entitled to a probable cause hearing within 60 days of his arrest.