Autistic 18-year-old beaten, burned with cigarettes and has hair set on fire in 'humiliating' two-hour ordeal
Israel Junior Rivera, Paul Dustin and Brandon Lemieux, who are all 19, were indicted for the incident that allegedly occurred in October in the town of Seabrook
Three teenagers from New Hampshire have been charged for assaulting an 18-year-old autistic man. The three suspects, Israel Junior Rivera, Paul Dustin and Brandon Lemieux, who are all 19, were indicted for the incident that allegedly occurred in October last year in the town of Seabrook.
Reports state that the victim was beaten and burned with cigarettes, and later had his hair sent on fire and spat on by the assailants. The entire ordeal was then posted to Snapchat by the accused men, the Daily Mail reported.
According to court documents, Dustin and Lemieux punched the victim alternatively and Rivera allegedly repeatedly kicked the 18-year-old and then punched him. The incident continued for more than two hours. Prosecutors said that the victim's hair was burned during the incident too.
The victim, in his statement, wrote: "For approximately two hours, I was at South Main Street being humiliated and physically and verbally abused and harassed." The teen also told the authorities that many people present during the assault filmed the incident and posted it on Snapchat.
"After that I was completely humiliated, most of the people at the house were spitting on me, physically abusing me, flicking ash in my hair, kicking me and making me admit crimes I did not commit," he told police.
Police officials allege that the assailants were trying to coerce the teen into admiting to a crime he did not commit, according to reports.
Reports state that Rivera allegedly demanded the autistic teen to admit to smashing an acquaintance's car with cinder blocks. Rivera had reportedly committed the crime a month earlier. The victim said that he was with Rivera the night the car was vandalized.
While Rivera faces counts of criminal mischief, criminal restraint and witness tampering stemming from the assault as well as the damage to the car, Dustin and Lemieux each face one charge of criminal restraint. If the suspects are convicted, the charges carry a sentence of of three and a half to seven years.
The victim, while reporting the assault to police, told the authorities that he was left with "very sore" ribs and stomach and showed the officer that he had bruising on his stomach and swelling on his torso.
The officer reportedly advised the victim to stop associating with his assailants and then spoke with a witness who showed him footage of the assault. The clip led to the charges against the three men.