(CHICAGO) — Two Chicago teenagers have been charged with first degree murder for allegedly filming the fatal beating of a 62-year-old father of 12, in what is the latest incident of teens taping and sharing violent crimes online.
Delfino Mora’s family said that he was collecting cans in an alley on the Rogers Park neighborhood of Chicago on July 10 when prosecutors say he was attacked by Malik Jones, 16, Nicholas Ayala, 17, and Anthony Malcolm, 18.
Mora was found unconscious but breathing just before 8 a.m. by a passerby, but he died seven hours later as a result of blunt head trauma endured during the attack, police said.
“I think they are heartless,” the victim’s son Jose Mora told ABC News’ Chicago affiliate WLS-TV. “Why they would do this to a guy, older guy, 62? You know, I don’t know. It is so painful.”
All three suspects have now been charged with first-degree murder. Jones, who is being tried as an adult, is the one prosecutors say delivered the lethal punch to Mora, which caused Mora to hit his head on the concrete.
Ayala and Malcolm were denied bail on Monday. Jones had previously been denied bail.
According to investigators, Jones gave his cellphone to the two other alleged attackers, who took turns filming the assault.
The clip of the beating was later posted to Jones’ Facebook page, police said. A witness was able to pass a link to the video along to another man who had reportedly been attacked by Jones in a separate incident. The police were soon notified of the filmed attack.
The filming and posting of the attack on Mora is the latest incident of what has become known as “happy slapping,” filmed assaults that are then posted to Facebook or YouTube as a means of bragging or gaining online notoriety.
Though this filmed mischief and anti-social behavior has been popular among teens for years, lately it has become increasingly violent.
Last November, a video surfaced online of a Chicago teen who sucker-punched a homeless man in a subway station while his friends filmed it and laughed, and later posted the clip online. The teenager was charged with aggravated battery.
In December, a 20-year-old New Jersey man was arrested after a friend filmed him attacking a homeless man in a wooded area in Wall Township.
In the United Kingdom and other European countries, the trend has gone on to include filming increasingly violent crimes. According to The London Times, the “happy-slapping” fad began in south London in 2004, and since, it has escalated to include filmed rape and even a case of manslaughter.
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio
Debra Goldschmidt and Nadia Kounang, CNN
Ralph Ellis and Steve Almasy, CNN
Adrienne Shih, CNN
Billy Hallowell, Deseret News