Teen Convicted in Father Poisoning Plot Gets 3 YearsAP , Associated Press
Mar. 7, 1985 1:52 PM ET
ORLANDO, FLA. ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) _ A teen-ager convicted of trying to murder his father with a hard-to-detect poison has been sentenced to three years in state prison and ordered to undergo psychiatric counseling.
Montgomery Todd Meeks, 19, also was placed on 50 years' probation during which he must perform 200 hours of community service per year.
''You're intelligent, you're a genius, according to the testimony,'' Orange County Circuit Judge Lawrence Kirkwood told Meeks Wednesday. ''You just failed to reach your potential for some reason.''
Meeks was convicted of attempted murder and solicitation of murder after he sent a classmate to Louisville, Ky., to buy a deadly poison called ricin in October 1983.
Friends who knew about the plot intercepted the classmate and replaced the poison with water. At his trial Meeks admitted placing what he thought was the poison in a cup of water his father, Prentice Meeks, drank. The son later changed his mind and tried to retrieve the cup, he said.
Meeks said he hatched the plot because his father abused him and two successive wives.
But prosecutors said Meeks stood to inherit hundreds of thousands of dollars in life insurance money and his father's mobile home business.
He was convicted Jan. 30 after a jury deliberated less than an hour.
Meeks, who has an IQ of 147, attended classes for the gifted at Colonial High School east of Orlando, but flunked a class and failed to graduate with his class in the spring of 1983.