BREVARD COUNTY, Fla. - A judge on Thursday found a Brevard County boy not guilty of assaulting his classmates with an
Emory Denton and his father refused to accept a deal after Emory's arrest in November and decided to go to trial instead.
On Thursday, prosecutors tried to offer Emory another deal, but his father refused again.
A judge dismissed a charge of disorderly conduct and found the 12-year-old not guilty on two charges of assault.
"It was wonderful," said Emory's father, Bret Denton. "That's all I can say. That's my boy. I just knew he wasn't trying to hurt anybody. He was just having fun. I don't think anybody deserves to go through what he went through."
On the stand, the children at Emory bus stop didn't agree on whether they were frightened or amused on when he showed up with an airsoft gun.
But they all agreed on one thing: None of them mistook the toy for a real handgun.
Emory, however, was accused of aggravated assault and trespass on school grounds, since he was at a bus stop.
Ultimately, the Palm Bay boy was charged with three misdemeanors.
Last month, the state
Attorney's Office told the Denton family it would drop its case if Emory entered a diversion program, but that would mean admitting to the allegations against him. His family, however, maintained Emory should not have been charged.
Now, Emory hopes to return to school and his friends.
"I couldn't go anywhere. I couldn't play with my friends. We couldn't do anything, play any sports or anything fun," Emory said.