Crime

48-year-old man charged in group beating of 15-year-old in Centralia

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Witnessing a crime and reporting it can be just as frightening as being the victim of a crime. Here’s what you should do if you witness illegal activity.

Centralia Police have arrested three juveniles and an adult believed to have beaten a 15-year-old.

WJBD reported Sunday that Christopher James, 48, Centralia, was arrested Saturday evening. Police believe he and three juveniles “brutally” beat a 15-year-old Centralia boy earlier this month.

James and the juveniles are charged with mob action and aggravated battery causing great bodily harm. He was taken to the Marion County Jail and the juveniles are being held in Franklin County Juvenile Detention Center.

Two of the juveniles are 17-years-old and one is 14.

Centralia Police Chief Brian Atchison said the 15-year-old victim has sustained “permanent injuries” and is hospitalized in St. Louis.

He added the beating was the result of an dispute between two groups. Police said a bicycle or other blunt object caused to most severe damage in the beating.

A woman intervened in the beating while on her way to work. Centralia Mayor Herb Williams recently declared Monday, Aug 12, as Jessika Korzenewski Day, for her aid of the 15-year-old victim.

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Kavahn Mansouri covers government accountability for the Belleville News-Democrat, holding officials and institutions accountable and tracking how taxpayer money is spent.
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