Sturgis juvenile charged as an adult in connection with death of WY teen

Local News

He’s only 17, but he’s being charged as an adult.

Michael Campbell of Sturgis is being held on $ 1 million bond in connection with the death of a Wyoming teen, who went missing on October 3.

Campbell, who is charged with second degree murder in Meade County, is accused of killing 16-year-old Shayna Ritthaler of Moorcroft, Wyoming.

He made his initial appearance in Meade County Wednesday.

“So his attorneys asked that bond be set at $250,000 cash surety. I asked that a no bond be set in this case, but the judge determined that a bond would be set in the amount of a million dollars cash surety,” acting Meade County State’s Attorney Michele Bordewyk said.

Ritthaler’s hometown of Moorcroft, which is along I-90, is a small historic town with a population of just over 1,000 people. It’s a little over an hour away from Sturgis.

When Shayna was first reported as missing on October 3, authorities had reason to believe she may be in either Sturgis or Deadwood.

According to the Meade County Sheriff’s office, Ritthaler’s body was found in the basement of Campbell’s house. He lives with his mother, in the Blucksberg Addition just southeast of Sturgis.

If convicted, Campbell won’t face life in prison.

“Because he is a juvenile, the penalty is not life imprisonment, it is a term of years, and then the maximum fine for that is $50,000” Bordewyk said.

An autopsy will be performed Thursday.

KELOLAND News reached out to Shayna’s High School and talked with the school counselor, who told us they are not commenting at this time.

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