Third teen in custody in deadly hammer attack in St. Louis

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(CNN) — A third teen is in custody in the death of a man beaten with a hammer on a St. Louis street, and police are looking for a fourth suspect.

Two juveniles — 15 and 16 — were arrested Sunday in the attack, which apparently started with a verbal exchange. An investigation is under way.

The third juvenile, a 17-year-old male, turned himself in to police, the St. Louis Police Department said. He was charged with first degree murder and armed criminal action. Prosecutors identified him as Robert Mitchell, and he is being charged as an adult.

The victim, 32-year-old Zemir Begic, suffered injuries to his head, abdomen, face and mouth, according to police.

He was unconscious by the time officers arrived. Begic was taken to an area hospital, where he was pronounced dead, police said.

“Investigation revealed the victim was traveling in his vehicle when several juveniles approached his vehicle on foot and began damaging it.

“The victim exited his vehicle and the juveniles began yelling at the victim and striking him with hammers. After the assault, the juveniles fled the scene on foot,” read an incident report.

According to the probable cause statement, Begic was with his fiancee and two others when he was attacked. Mitchell taunted Begic, challenged him to a fight, and then the four teens began to beat him, the statement says.

At least one of the assailants struck the victim with a hammer.

On Monday, St. Louis Police Chief Sam Dotson said police are searching for a fourth teen.

The unusual hammer attack raised questions about motive, but there is no indication that this was a targeted crime, Dotson said.

Police have determined that there was a dispute between Begic and his attackers. Begic got in his car and one of the youths kicked his car, Dotson said. At that point, Begic exited the car and the violent assault happened, he said.

CNN’s Mariano Castillo contributed to this report.


    • brian

      I’m confused about why the stealing of the cigars have ANYTHING to do with the unfortunate incident between the cop and Michael Brown. So what if he did steal?! Petit Larceny does not justify murder. I’m sick of white people keep bringing that up. All that matters is what happened in that few minutes.

      • brian

        I understand the stealing is used by whites to be character assassination but what a weak attempt. I don’t care if Mike Brown did call the cop a pu$$y and every other name in the book that doesn’t justify murder. And what person would go attack a cop (who we all know is armed) when they know they don’t have a gun of their own? Everybody knows if you attack a cop they wont hesitate to shoot you.g

      • ajmacdonaldjr

        Are you kidding me? The officer stopped Brown because he fit the description given of the man who robbed the store.

      • athynz

        I’m confused about why the stealing of the cigars have ANYTHING to do with the unfortunate incident between the cop and Michael Brown.”

        It was the theft that started this whole tale. The theft was reported along with a description of Brown, plus Brown and his friend were walking in the middle of the road. Both the description and the walking in the middle of the road were probable cause for the stop.

        “So what if he did steal?! Petit Larceny does not justify murder.”

        No, petit larceny nor grand larceny justify murder. Defending oneself against a potentially leathal attack however is a different story.

        “I’m sick of white people keep bringing that up.”

        So did Charles Barkley and other black people. What does one’s color have to do with it?

        “All that matters is what happened in that few minutes.”

        Indeed – and the fact is according to the evidence Michael Brown jumped in the patrol cruiser and attempted to take Wilson’s gun from him. The ballistics, the blood spatter evidence found the the cruiser and on Wilson uniform support this as do the statements of several witnesses.

        Regardless NONE of the above justifies rioting and looting either.

      • Ken

        The cop did NOT know about the robbery. Link from la times provided below and my comment which disputes everything you are saying!. I agree looting and violent rioting is not necessary.

      • Ken

        Further, lethal attack? ? With what? He jumped in the patrol car?? Lol, really? Yea right. That’s lies. Blood splatter proof? It’s all balogna. You can keep believing these lies. The police did a bad job investigating. What blood splatter? He wanted the blood from the gun and his hands. Your are full of it just like the cops.

    • brian

      This is the truth tavis….Your vide is grade A B$! He’s basically saying blacks are racist because they speak on racism when they see it.

  • Family__Court__Phucks__Men

    This is sad. They were newlyweds. She didn’t even get a chance to make
    false allegations, and then collect lifetime alimony and child support.
    This is EVERY woman’s dream.

    • John H.

      The news story didn’t elaborate on what happened to the woman. It says she was in the car. I’m surprised she didn’t get hurt trying to help break up the fight. She is lucky they didn’t attack her.

  • Kelly

    And you have no clue what happened. I am sick of black people denying forensic evidenceand making this a race issue.

    • tim

      look, the police department is corrupt. They tainted with evidence. They did not follow protocol. How do you shoot someone supposedly in self defense then leave the scene? How does a crime scene investigator have a dead battery and cant take pictures of the scene? She/he should be fired. Or is it that they didn’t want pictures of the crime scene? His body laid there for hours and no one could go get batteries or go to the store and by a camera? They didn’t have extras at the office? The officer went and washed his hands and wiped off the gun. They basically took the officer’s word for it and shut the case. Hopefully, the feds will charge him and there will be a trial. Fair trial, fair hanging anyone? If this ever went to trial, it would be a circus. So much shady police work. Oh and another thing. The cop said he didn’t have his taser that day because its too bulky. What a wimp. So you put yourself in a predicament where the only thing you can do is shoot someone if needed. Wonder if he had his club.

      • kitty

        yup……and thats why they made him resigned…..whites dont get it its not about a race thing but about the law getting out of hand …i seen a youtube video of a white cop punching a mentally disabled white women o a public bus because she kept running away from the facility she is living all she did was yell at him and socked her right in the face …who stood up for her blacks did…and when whites riot burn and loot ..cause your soccer team or basketball team looses its okay for you guys…just get over the race thing doesnt make life better for anyone

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