AUGUSTA, Maine (Associated Press) — A teenager who told authorities he “snapped” and killed his parents while struggling with gender identity and acceptance was sentenced Tuesday to 40 years in prison.
Andrew Balcer, who was 17 at the time of the fatal stabbings, asked for forgiveness from his remaining family members, many of whom had called for the maximum penalty.
“I made a terrible mistake, one that cost the lives of the two people that gave me life and raised me,” Balcer said, according to The Kennebec Journal. “I am only here to ask for one thing: that is the forgiveness of my family.”
His attorney argued that the teenager was dealing with his transition from male to female in isolation and without family support at the time of the killings. He had no criminal record before the violence early on Oct. 31, 2016, in the family’s Winthrop home.