Nathanael High was fifteen years old when he murdered his father who happened to be the Chief of police. According to court documents Nathanael High and his thirteen year old girlfriend would fatally shoot the victim as he lay asleep. The teen couple would take a number of items from the home before fleeing. The pair would be arrested soon after. The thirteen year old girlfriend (who has not been named) was convicted of second degree murder and is due to be released in 2024. Nathanael High was initially sentenced to life in prison however it was later reduced and the teen killer is scheduled to be released in 2023
Nathanael High 2023 Information
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A man who murdered his father when he was 15 years old will get out of prison early.
A judge has resentenced Nathanael High nearly two decades after he was originally sentenced to life in prison. Changes in state law since High’s conviction bar a minor from getting life without parole.
Nathanael High admitted he killed his father but said he shouldn’t spend the rest of his life in prison for the murder.
Nathanael High’s mother cried in court at the thought of hugging her son again, which is something she hasn’t done since 2010.
“It’s hard for people to understand that I still love my dad too, and I miss him,” Nathanael High said.
In 2002, Nathanael and his 13-year-old girlfriend shot his father, Randy High, as he slept in his bed. Nathanael High said Randy High, who was the chief of the Gaston College Police Department, was horribly abusive.
“Nothing my dad ever did to me means he deserved what happened to him on Feb. 10, 2002,” Nathanael High said.
A change in state law allowed him to enter a new plea for second-degree murder. The plea can get Nathanael High out of prison in as little as two years.
“It’s very important for me that my family know I’m sorry for this,” he said.
Gaston County Police Chief Joe Ramey knew Randy High and worked the crime scene in 2002.
“It’s always difficult to accept a lower sentence in a premeditated or cold-blooded murder such as this,” Ramey said.
Ramey said he understands the reason for the changes in the law, but he thinks there should be an exception in this case. Nathanael High and his girlfriend reportedly went to the mall and got ice cream after the murder.
Randy, he’s not here to speak, so we have to speak for him,” Ramey said.
Nathanael High’s sister spoke for her brother.
“Nathanael has a wonderful heart, and we need him to come home,” Melissa Slamcik said.
Nathanael High could get out of prison in 2023, which means he would get out a year before his girlfriend and co-defendant who is serving time for second-degree murder.
Nathanael High Other News
A Gaston County man convicted of the 2002 killing of his father while still a teenager could negotiate a new plea agreement during Gaston County Superior Court on Thursday.
A Gaston County jury found Nathanael High guilty in May 2004 of first-degree murder and robbery of a dangerous weapon in the death of his father, Randy High, who was police chief of Gaston College.
High, who was 15 when his father died, was serving a life sentence when U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 2012 that automatic sentences of life without parole for juveniles was unconstitutional because it constituted cruel and unusual punishment.
As a result of a hearing held in 2014, the first-degree murder conviction was thrown out and High pleaded guilty to second-degree murder, getting him a sentence that concludes Oct. 10, 2030.
In a N.C. Court of Appeal opinion filed on June 2, Appeals Court Judge Christopher Brook wrote that the trial court erred in calculating High’s prior record level, which resulted in making him eligible for a longer sentence.
High appeared in Gaston Superior Court Monday afternoon before Judge Jesse Caldwell, but District Attorney Locke Bell recommended High’s negotiation hearing be held Thursday rather than Monday.
“After conversations with the state and the defense this (Monday) morning as the potential for resolution, both the state and defense are in agreement that it’d be premature to move forward this morning,” Bell said.
“It’d be best if this be heard Thursday morning at 9:30, which would allow the defense attorneys to have adequate time to discuss a possible resolution with the defendant,” Bell continued.
Caldwell agreed to move High’s hearing to Thursday, giving High’s defense team more time to discuss a new plea agreement.
High is currently serving his sentence at the Mountain View Correctional Institution in Spruce Pine.