Grandfather: Teen murder suspect ‘not a monster’

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WYOMING, Mich. (WOOD) — The grandfather of a 15-year-old murder suspect said he doesn’t know why the boy would what he’s accused of doing — his only explanation is that “something broke in him.”

The body of 16-year-old Michael White was discovered at Lions Park in Wyoming on March 19. Police say he was been beaten to death. Carlos Delgado is one of two 15-year-olds now charged with murder as adults in the case. He’s facing life in prison

“Nothing I can say will be right in regard to the family of Michael White, nothing I say, but I have to love my son and I’m sorry for what happened,” said Delgado’s grandfather, who asked not to be identified by name.

For all intents and purposes, he is Delgado’s father as his biological parents are not involved in his life. His grandfather thinks that’s part of the reason the teen is now behind bars.

“He’s not a monster,” said his grandfather. “He’s just a kid that broke. Something broke in him; something went wrong. I don’t know exactly what. I don’t have that answer.”

He says Delgago’s rebellion was fueled by feeling abandoned by his mother followed by anger about the divorce between his grandparents. His juvenile record includes a charge of criminal sexual conduct involving a 9-year-old and destruction of property.

But his grandfather never thought he could be capable of murder.

“I thought he maybe stole something,” he said of his response when authorities contacted him. “I don’t know — just something stupid as teenagers do. Then she told me, ‘Well, I think they killed this boy Michael White.’ I said, ‘What? What are you taking about?'”

According to court documents, Delgado admitted to beating and stabbing White. In the documents, an officer said he “did willfully kill” the Wyoming High School student and made “incriminating statements” about the murder on Facebook. His grandfather did not wish to discuss those statements. Records also show bloody clothing was found at Delgado’s grandmother’s home, where he was living.

“I understand he’s got to pay for what he did, I understand that, but I love my son I will always love him, but I don’t like what he did. But I don’t want him to spend the rest of his life in there,” his grandfather said.

He has spoken to Delgado in jail, but said they don’t talk about the case. They have yet to speak about what happened that night.

Quinten Schaffer, 15, is also being tried as an adult for White’s murder. Both boys will be back in court next month.

Delgado’s grandfather said he is concerned about him being tried as an adult.

“I said, Carlos, ‘Do you know what the Miranda rights are?’ And he says yes. I said, ‘But do you understand the Miranda rights?’ Then he tells me, ‘Not really,'” his grandfather said. “So to me, that’s an issue in regards to him being a child with a child’s mind.”

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