CINCINNATI – Three Ohio teenagers who told police that they beat a man at random because they were bored pleaded guilty in the case on Monday as part of a plea agreement with prosecutors.
The three 14-year-olds pleaded guilty in Hamilton County Juvenile Court to felonious assault. In exchange, prosecutors dropped charges of aggravated rioting.
The teens will be sentenced in the next two months. Their potential punishments range from probation to being held in juvenile prison until they’re 21.
Charges against three other teens in the beating are pending.
Police say the six teens, all 13 and 14 years old, admitted to the brutal beating 45-year-old Pat Mahaney on Aug. 11 in the Cincinnati suburb of North College Hill as he was returning home with a six-pack of beer. Witnesses stopped the beating and called police, and Mahaney was hospitalized for four days with serious external and internal injuries.
The teens told police they attacked Mahaney unprovoked because they were bored and looking for something to do, North College Hill Chief Gary Foust said.
He said Monday that he hopes the teens get time behind bars, though he did not specify how much he thought would be appropriate.
“First of all, it was done out of boredom. And secondly, it was an assault that required hospitalization,” Foust said. “We’d certainly hope the judicial system will hold accountable the individuals that did that and will take the appropriate measures.”
The beating shook the quiet, blue-collar suburb of North College Hill and led a white supremacist group to conduct a rally along one of its main drags last week, calling the beating a hate crime; Mahaney is white and the teens are black.
Police said they have no reason to believe race was a motive in the attack.
Mahaney has not returned calls for comment to The Associated Press.
He told The Cincinnati Enquirer in August that the boys’ young age surprised him.
“I didn’t think kids could do something like this,” he said. “They should be punished.”