Eight teenagers were arrested Tuesday and booked on suspicion of murder in connection with the death of a 17-year-old who was fatally beaten near a Las Vegas high school this month, police said.
The eight, who were not identified because they are minors, were part of a group of at least 10 people who punched, kicked and stomped Jonathan Lewis after school on the afternoon of Nov. 1, Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department officials said.
The suspects range in age from 13 to 17 and were booked on suspicion of murder, Undersheriff Andrew Walsh said at a Tuesday afternoon news conference.
He said the department was urging that qualified suspects be charged as adults.
The beating took place near Rancho High School. Family members told police that Lewis was brain-dead Nov. 7 at a hospital and that they made plans that day to donate his organs, Vegas homicide Lt. Jason Johansson said.
The Clark County medical examiner’s office concluded the cause of Lewis’ death was blunt force trauma, with the manner of death being homicide, the lieutenant said.
Walsh said the eight were arrested Tuesday morning with the help of FBI agents.
At least two others believed to have been involved in the attack have not been identified, and the department Tuesday night planned to circulate video of the pair with the hope someone would recognize them and come forward, Johansson said.
Johansson said the fight was over stolen headphones and possibly a stolen marijuana vape pen that belonged either to Lewis or his friend. The friend had agreed to a fight in the alley after school, he said, but as the parties squared off, Lewis apparently stepped in to defend his friend and was attacked.
“Their actions have life-altering consequences,” the undersheriff said of the suspects.