Convicted child killer Michael Hernandez has apologized for fatally stabbing his middle school friend and claims he has gained control of twisted thoughts that led to the 2004 crime.

Hernandez took the stand Thursday during a hearing on whether his current life prison sentence should stand. Hernandez says he now realizes killing 14-year-old Jaime Gough was wrong and apologized tearfully to the boy's family.

Prosecutor Gail Levine accused Hernandez of faking tears and showing remorse only in hopes of gaining release. Levine says Hernandez remains obsessed with serial killers and violence.

The new hearing was ordered after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 2012 that juveniles could not automatically be sentenced to life without chance of parole. Hernandez was 14 when he killed Gough in a school bathroom.