LINCOLN COUNTY, W.Va. — A plea deal is expected to leave a Lincoln County teen who killed his step-grandfather under state control for years.

Charged as an adult, Ryan Perry killed his step-grandfather Bobby Waldon in Hamlin last year at the age of 17. The shooting led to murder charges, but Wednesday’s plea agreement resolved the case.

Perry was found not guilty by reason of mental illness. A psychological evaluation showed Perry is on the autism spectrum and has issues with PTSD stemming from childhood neglect and abuse.

Waldon had stepped up to help the troubled teen.

Prosecutor Jackie Stevens read the victim’s family’s impact statement.

“Our world was forever changed on Jan. 29, 2021,” Stevens read. “A person Bobby loved unconditionally ripped his life away and we are all left with the question of why.”

Defense attorney Robby Long noted the victim and shooter shared an interest that turned deadly.

“Guns were one of the few things Bobby found brought Ryan and him a connection,” Long said. “Sadly, that common ground and connection turned into a tragedy last January.”

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