Eight teenagers were taken into custody on Tuesday and have been charged with suspicion of murder in connection with the tragic death of a 17-year-old student near a Las Vegas high school earlier this month, as announced by the police.
The incident occurred on November 1, when the victim, Jonathan Lewis, was assaulted by a group of at least 10 individuals, who reportedly punched, kicked, and stomped him after school hours.
Due to their status as minors, the identities of the eight suspects have not been disclosed publicly. The age range of the apprehended individuals is between 13 and 17 years old.
Undersheriff Andrew Walsh, during a news conference on Tuesday afternoon, confirmed the murder charges against the suspects and emphasized the police department’s push to have qualified suspects charged as adults.
The brutal beating unfolded in the vicinity of Rancho High School. Lewis was declared brain-dead on November 7, as per statements from family members, who decided to donate his organs on that day.
The Clark County medical examiner’s office determined the cause of death as blunt force trauma, categorizing it as a homicide.
Walsh reported that the arrests took place on Tuesday morning with the assistance of FBI agents. While the eight apprehended individuals are now in custody, at least two other participants in the attack remain unidentified.
The police department planned to release video footage of the two individuals in the hope that someone would recognize them and provide information.
According to Lt. Jason Johansson, the altercation stemmed from a dispute over stolen headphones and possibly a stolen marijuana vape pen, believed to belong to either Lewis or his friend.
Although the friend had agreed to a confrontation in the alley after school, Lewis intervened to protect his friend, resulting in the fatal attack.
Undersheriff Walsh concluded by stating, “Their actions have life-altering consequences,” referring to the severe impact of the suspects’ actions on both the victim’s life and their own futures.