TOLEDO, OHIO - Four teenagers are facing murder charges in the death of a Michigan man, who was hit by a sandbag tossed off an I-75 overpass in Toledo.
Over the weekend, the Lucas County Prosecutor's office raised the charges against the teens — who range in age from 13 to 14 — to include murder, felony vehicular vandalism, and misdemeanor vehicular vandalism.
Initially, the youths were charged with felonious assault, but the charges changed after Marquise Byrd, the man who was struck, passed away Friday evening.
"We charged with what we thought was appropriate right now," said Lori Olender, Deputy Chief in Lucas County Prosecutor's Office, who noted that the charges could change ever so slightly as her team reviews the teens' backgrounds, statements, and circumstances.
"Once we look at that, we'll take age into consideration when deciding what ultimately is the charge in this case," Olender continued, noting that the murder charge will stay. "The main thing we want is for them (the teens) to stay in custody during this process and that we have the highest charge possible."
On Dec. 19, Byrd was sitting in the front passenger seat of a car traveling down I-75 in Toledo, when he was struck by a sandbag that had been tossed from a highway overpass. The 22-year-old, who hails from Warren, suffered severe head injuries and died three days later.
Following the attack, police arrested the teenagers after they saw them leaving the area near the overpass.
The incident is similar to the Oct. 18 death of Kenneth (Kenny) White, who was killed after being hit by a rock that a group of teens threw off an I-75 overpass in Flint.
The five Clio area boys, ages 15-17, have been charged with second-degree murder in White's death. They face up to life in prison if convicted.
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