The teenager who was beaten to death outside a school founded by LeBron James in Ohio suffered gruesome injuries, according to a preliminary autopsy report.
Ethan Liming was beaten to death in the parking lot of the I Promise School in Akron on June 2.
Donovan Jones, 21, Tyler Stafford, 19, and DeShawn Stafford Jr., 20, were playing basketball at the elementary school. As TheBlaze previously reported, Liming and his friends drove into the parking lot and then sprayed the young men playing basketball with water gel beads from a toy called a "SplatRBall" gun.
The three young men fled the basketball court.
During a bail hearing earlier this month, Stafford's lawyer, Jonathan Sinn, claimed that his client believed that he was being attacked by a "fully automatic firearm."
Ethan's father, Bill Liming, asserted that his 17-year-old son attempted to defuse the tense situation.
"When he got out of the car and told people to relax, it's a joke, it's a joke, and the individuals didn't like that. One individual attacked [Ethan], the father told the Akron Beacon Journal.
A fight erupted between three young men and Liming and his three teenage friends. The other teens were able to escape, but Liming was beaten to death. The three young men fled the crime scene.
A preliminary autopsy report revealed that Ethan Liming died of blunt-force trauma to the head.
The Summit County Medical Examiner found that Liming had a broken occipital bone.
"The occipital bone is the trapezoid-shaped bone at the lower-back of the cranium (skull)," according to Verywell Health. "The occipital bone houses the back part of the brain and is one of seven bones that come together to form the skull."
The Daily Mail reported that the teen suffered a broken neck.
The Akron Beacon Journal reported that Liming suffered a head laceration, a black eye, and a footprint on his chest wall. The outlet added that police found an unresponsive Liming lying on his back, bleeding from his head, nose, mouth, and ears. Liming's cellphone was smashed.
A final autopsy report is expected to take weeks.
U.S. Marshals arrested the three young men who are suspects in the deadly beating on June 11.
All three suspects have pleaded not guilty to murder and felonious assault. They are being held on a $1 million bond.
Earlier this month, Bill Liming told WEWS-TV, "We would do anything we could possibly do to turn the clock back and have him in my arms again. And to see his face again, but they robbed me of even that ability. And they destroyed my child's face and his head."
"People keep saying, 'Oh, you do these things and you deserve, you get what you deserve.' I don't think anybody's child would ever deserve what happened to him," the father said. "Nobody's child would deserve what they did to my child."
LeBron James tweeted about the deadly attack at the I Promise School, "Our condolences goes out to the family who lost a loved one!! My the heavens above watch over you during this tragedy! Pray for our community!"