U.S. Marshals have arrested three men in connection with the brutal murder of Ethan Liming. Liming, 17, was found beaten to death on June 2 in the parking lot of the I Promise School in Akron, Ohio. The school was founded by LeBron James.
In a press release, the U.S. Marshals Service revealed that the agency’s Northern Ohio Violent Fugitive Task Force made the arrests in conjunction with Akron Police on Saturday morning.
DeShawn Stafford Jr., 20, Tyler Stafford, 19 and Donovan Jones, 21, were all taken into custody and will be charged in connection with Liming’s death.
The teenager was beaten to death around 10:46 p.m. on June 2. Law enforcement have stated that Ethan Liming died from blunt force trauma to the head.
Witnesses have reported that Liming and his friends were driving around while shooting passersby with a toy water gun. One of Liming’s friends reportedly shot one of the killers with the toy water gun, which provoked the beating.
“Teenagers were being teenagers,” said Bill Liming, Ethan’s father, according to the Akron Beacon Journal. “I don’t want to say too much about the investigation. But apparently some of his friends who were with him were fooling around in the parking lot and some other people didn’t like it.”
According to Bill Liming, Ethan got out of the car to try to stop the confrontation when an individual hit him from behind in the back of the head.
“He was fighting back for his life. A third individual came up behind him and overwhelmed him. And they knocked him out on the ground. His friends tried to help him,” he said.
“My son Ethan Liming was murdered by three African American males and a female who stood by and did nothing,” Bill added.
Liming was laying on the ground in the parking lot when police arrived, authorities said. After attempts to save the teen were unsuccessful, he was pronounced dead at the scene.
“I am happy to report that today, officers with the Akron Police Department, made several arrests in connection with the death of Ethan Liming. We thank the members of the community for their outpouring of support that helped investigators throughout this investigation,” said Akron Police Chief Stephen Mylett in the press release.
“While I believe the news of the arrests will be welcomed by Ethan’s family and loved ones, we all recognize that nothing will bring Ethan back,” he added. “Violence in this country must stop. We are losing too many lives to senseless acts of violence.”
Bill Liming told Fox News that Ethan was a loving and charitable person with a “bright future” ahead. The elder Liming added that Ethan wanted to attend law school.