Teen suspect in kidnapping, murder of Jessica Ridgeway, formally charged
Published: October 30, 2012 10:46AM
Updated: October 30, 2012 01:27PM
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This image provided by the Westminster Colorado Police Department shows Jessica Ridgeway. (AP Photo/Westminster Colorado Police Department)

The 17-year-old teenager who allegedly confessed to killing 10-year-old Jessica Ridgeway was formally chargedas an adult in Colorado’s Jefferson County on Tuesday morning.

Austin Sigg is being held without bail in the murder and kidnapping of Jessica Ridgeway and in an attack on a female jogger at Ketner Lake in May.

He was charged with 17 counts total. In the Jessica case, the 11 charges include first-degree murder after deliberation, three counts of felony murder, second-degree kidnapping, sex assualt on a child and robbery.

In the case of the jogger, the six counts include attempted first-degree murder, attempted kidnapping and attempted sexual assault.

District Attorney Scott Storey said last week that charging Sigg as an adult is “the right thing to do.” He added, however, that seeking the death penalty is not a consideration because of U.S. Supreme Court rulings. Likewise, a sentence of life without parole is not an option for those under the age of 18.

Sigg, a mortuary-science student, faces up to 40 years in prison. Storey has said the evidence against the teen, who confessed and has been tied to the case through DNA, is overwhelming.

Jessica was kidnapped on her way to school on Oct. 5 and part of her body was found five days later in a field.

Authorities have also said that Sigg’s first known attack was against a woman who was jogging around Ketner Lake, also near Sigg’s home, in May.

Documents in the case have been sealed.

The next court date has been set for Nov. 27