A 16-year-old who was part of the mob of 40 people who attacked two Marines during a beach party will be tried as an adult, the teen’s sibling said.
The assault, which was captured in a now-viral video, happened shortly before 10 p.m. Friday in the city of San Clemente near Camp Pendleton, a Marine Corps base.
The 16-year-old was one of five teens – four boys and one girl – who got arrested on Tuesday for assault with a deadly weapon.
It’s unclear why the teen will be charged as an adult and if the other teens will also be charged as adults.
Video circulating online showed the victims, Marine Hunter Antonino and two other unnamed servicemen, getting kicked on the ground until a woman and a man broke it up.
The 16-year-old who was one of five teens – four boys and one girl – who got arrested on Tuesday for assault with a deadly weapon for attacking three marines, will be charged as an adult
Antonino told KCAL the fight began when he told the teens to stop lighting fireworks
Police initially found two victims but then determined a third Marine was also attacked, according to the Orange County Sheriff’s Department.
Recent footage emerged calling into question the innocence of the three Marines involved.
The video shows the teen provoking the servicemen who are seen staggering about San Clemente beach topless clutching bottles of beer on Friday night.
One of the servicemen lashes out at the teens, dropping his bottle of beer in the process, and has to be restrained by his comrade as the kids continue to goad them while filming on their phones.
Nine teens have since been arrested over the attack which saw the servicemen kicked repeatedly as they lay on the ground, leaving at least one of them concussed.
One of the teen’s family members told the New York Post that the minor suspect is facing two felony counts from Orange County prosecutors for the alleged assault.
The assault on the Marines has been widely condemned, including by the local mayor, particularly as it fell on Memorial Day weekend.
The Marines say they were assaulted after confronting the group over letting off fireworks.
But footage taken prior to the all out brawl shows Marine Hunter Antonino drinking around a number of the teenagers and openly conversing with them, all the while clutching a bottle of whiskey.
On Tuesday, Orange County Sheriff’s Department confirmed they had charged four boys and one girl with assault with a deadly weapon and they would be held in juvenile hall.
Another four have also been charged with misdemeanor assault and battery.
San Clemente Mayor Chris Duncan revealed that deputies have caught the main suspects in the mob of teenagers who launched the attack.
He said: ‘They think they have the people they are looking for. Not to say that there might not be a few others out there. They feel pretty confident that they have the main perpetrators.’
Footage of the incident was used to track down those involved, the mayor added.
‘In today’s age, you’re going to get caught — people are going to record it,’ Duncan said.
‘I hope this serves as a learning lesson for young folks in the community not to let themselves get out of control when something like this happens.’
When approached for comment on the latest footage of the incident, Orange County Sheriff’s Department said they had not seen the new video.
Hunter Antonino, one of the Marines, told KCAL that the fight began when he asked the teens to stop lighting fireworks
Antonino said he and his friend were enjoying some rare time off from Camp Pendleton in Oceanside during the Memorial Day weekend when the crowd began setting off the fireworks.
A piece of debris then hit him in the face and Antonino said he politely asked them to leave.
He said: ‘They were lighting off fireworks, they were being belligerent and obnoxious and annoying other people, so I went up to them and told them to stop,’ he recounted.
But the group followed him back to the pier, at which point Antonino said he and his friend warned the teenagers that they were Marines ‘so they would leave, but they didn’t.’
In the original minute-long clip posted to Facebook, the Marines were seen trying to walk up the steps outside the Pier Bowl as a group of teenagers shouted at them.
As they approached the stairs, a boy is seen brutally punching the back of one of the Marine’s heads.
A 16-year-old who was part of the mob of 40 people who attacked two Marines during a beach party will be tried as an adult
The original attack began outside the Pier Bowl as the Marines began walking up the steps
The latest video shows the moment a large group surround two of the Marines as they start pushing each other back and forth
The serviceman turned around and charged at the assailant, which led to an all-out brawl, as the kid’s friends jumped in to take swings and kick him.
Within seconds the group circled around the two Marines yelling ‘Get that f***er’ and ‘f*** that f***er up,’ even using the N-word at one point.
And two of the victims were seen curled up on the ground as the group continued to strike them with vicious kicks.
The brawl only came to an end after two bystanders, an unknown man and woman, intervened and yelled at the children: ‘Stop, what are you doing?’
San Clemente Mayor Chris Duncan described the Memorial Day weekend attack as ‘tragic.’
‘This is San Clemente, Marines are always welcome here, always going to be celebrated, always taken care of, and that is why this is so particularly tragic,’ he said.