I'm doing this massive work project to add subject headings to records that don't have any, concentrating on our children's and young adult stuff (1,315 to go!), since the most knowledgeable staff member in that area is planning on retiring in a year.
As a result, I keep stumbling across things that look interesting. This might become one of my Halloween Bingo reads - a book about an 17 or 18-year-old who was sent to a mental institution ("school for disturbed juveniles"?) after a girl's murder. It sounds like most of his small town believes he committed the murder, and only his grandfather believes him when he says he witnessed it.
The 1985 Kirkus review for this says the ending is melodramatic, but I feel like a lot of 1980s and 1990s YA thrillers and mysteries had at least a little melodrama. Look at Killing Mr. Griffin (okay, it was published in 1978), which ended with a maniacal villain attempting to burn the heroine alive in her own home. And, like, all of Christopher Pike's earlier works. (Now I kind of wish I had another Christopher Pike book on hand. I don't know that an ILL request would get me one fast enough to read it before the end of Halloween Bingo, though.)