A teenage boy has died after a brutal assault by a large group of bullies near a high school in Las Vegas. The attack happened on November 1 near Rancho High School when 17-year-old Jonathan Lewis was assaulted by around fifteen other youths, according to a KLAS report.
His father, also named Jonathan Lewis, confirmed his son's death to the station and said that his son kept to himself and lived in Las Vegas with his mother, although he had plans to relocate and live with his father in Austin, Texas. According to a GoFundMe page, Lewis was targeted for standing up for a smaller friend who had just been robbed by the group.
Beaten to Death by Bullies
Lewis was found by police around 2:05 pm on that day with severe head injuries. He was also profusely bleeding. The teenager was placed on life support at University Medical Center, and despite multiple efforts by doctors to save his life, he succumbed to his injuries on Tuesday.
"All I can do is hope there's a way that can find forgiveness in their heart and find a way to be able to come to terms with what they've done," His father said of his son's attackers.
In an interview with 8NewsNow, Lewis mentioned that his son typically kept to himself and had plans to relocate to Austin, Texas, to be with his father. At the time of his death, the teenager was living with his mother in Las Vegas.
"Violence just begets more violence and these children don't even know what they're doing half the time," Lewis said.
Following the teenager's death, video footage circulated on social media showing the moment a brawl erupted.
The video shows approximately a dozen youths kicking the 17-year-old while he is curled on the pavement.
Also, at least two teenagers can be seen standing nearby, recording the attack on their cellphones.
Lewis claimed that his son had intervened on behalf of a "smaller friend" whose belongings were stolen by the group, resulting in the friend being thrown into a trash can.
Describing his son as "courageous," Lewis said he wished to donate his son's organs to save others.
The father also expressed disappointment in the fight that led to the death of his son, saying that the "children don't even know what they're doing half the time." The heartbroken father added: "I think there's just a failure of all of humanity to recognize that we need to be teaching our youth how to coexist."
Las Vegas Metropolitan Police have launched a homicide investigation into the incident.
As of now, no arrests have been made, but Lewis said that investigators have informed the family of plans to charge several students involved with murder.
In response to the tragic event, Lewis set up a GoFundMe page titled 'Heart of a Champion Our Son,' where he shared a photo of himself holding his son's hand in the hospital on the day of his death.
"He will always be so loved as his dad I'll forever hold him in my heart, shine even brighter, love even more and work all my life to bring peace into this world," Lewis wrote.
He was also an aspiring artist and a dedicated older brother. "Although our hearts are broken and this tragedy is absolutely absurd madness, we want to focus on the legacy of our son," Lewis wrote.
"Jonathan was a loving, giving, kind, fierce young man who loved community and caring for others."