Two teenagers appeared in Barren Circuit Court on Monday for final sentencing in connection with last year’s shooting death of a Smiths Grove woman.

Nathan Wright, 19, a former resident of Horse Cave, pleaded guilty earlier this year to fatally shooting Veronica “Bonnie” Rothwell, 36, at Abner’s Gift Shop in Cave City last November.

Kentucky State Police detectives testified the three teens ranging in age from 16 to 18 at the time of the murder, robbed the store and then split the proceeds totaling an estimated $75 before driving to McDonald’s to eat.

Wright was sentenced to life without the possibility of parole or probation for 25 years on charges of murder, first-degree robbery and tampering with physical evidence.

A second teen, Aaron Boles, 17, of Cave City, a former student at Caverna High School, was sentenced to a total of 20 years for his role in the murder on charges of facilitation to murder, conspiracy to robbery and tampering with physical evidence.

Commonwealth Attorney Karen Davis previously agreed to amended charges for Boles in exchange for his testimony against the other two teenagers charged in the case.

In accordance with the plea agreement, Boles was charged with all non-violent offenses and will be eligible for parole after serving 20 percent of his sentence.

Boles could be eligible for release from incarceration before his 21st birthday with time already served.

A third defendant charged in Rothwell’s murder, David “Mikel” Alvey, 17, of Horse Cave, is scheduled to stand trial on the charges in February.

After imposing their sentences, Barren Circuit Court Judge Phil Patton ordered Boles be remanded to the custody of the Department of Juvenile Justice and Wright be returned to the Barren County Corrections Center while he awaits placement at an adult facility by the Kentucky Department of Corrections.


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