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Prosecutors: Man punched in head, knocked to ground, spit on — and later dies. He allegedly refused to give teen attackers a dollar.
Image source: WJZ-TV video screenshot

Prosecutors: Man punched in head, knocked to ground, spit on — and later dies. He allegedly refused to give teen attackers a dollar.

'Thank you for showing concern for our grieving-heartbroken family'

Prosecutors said John Marvin Weed, 59, was at the Great Frederick Fair in Maryland on Friday with his family when he was "harassed and followed by a group of teens," WJZ-TV reported.

The teens were angry that Weed wouldn't give them a dollar, prosecutors said, according to the station.

What allegedly happened next?

"There was some sort of dialogue that ensued after that that made it a negative situation," Frederick County State's Attorney Charlie Smith told WJZ. "There was a punch that was delivered to the back of the head by the 16-year-old." Smith added to the station that a video showed a 15-year-old "flying through" and landing "a deadly blow to the victim."

Image source: WJZ-TV video screenshot

Smith said video also showed one of the suspects spitting on Weed after punching him, WJZ reported, adding that the victim never regained consciousness and later died at a hospital.

Weed's cause of death is not known, WJLA-TV reported, adding that an autopsy has not yet been completed.

A WJZ reporter was in a courtroom when the prosecutor described the attack as "completely random" and said the victim was a "complete stranger" to the suspects, the station said.

What did the victim's family have to say?

A note was taped to the door of a Mount Airy home believed to be Weed's, WJLA reported. It read, "We are unable to make a statement at this time. ... Thank you for showing concern for our grieving-heartbroken family."

Image source: WJZ-TV video screenshot

What happened to the suspects?

Two teen brothers have been charged with second-degree assault, WJZ reported — and the 15-year-old is facing charges of first-degree assault and reckless endangerment. They're being charged as juveniles, the station added.

Smith told WJZ he's considering a move to adult court and a manslaughter charge for the 15-year-old who he said delivered the final punch.

The brothers' parents appeared in court Monday, the station said, and their father pleaded for their release pending a trial.

"My son is not an animal," the father said of his younger son, WJZ reported. "He's never been in trouble. He made a mistake. He's only 15. I feel for the other family. They lost a loved one. My son doesn't deserve to spend the rest of his life in prison."

But the judge — who called the attack a "terrible tragedy" — ordered both suspects to remain in the custody of juvenile services until their next court date on Oct. 22, the station said.

Hate crime?

When Smith was asked about racial motives and possible hate crime charges, the state's attorney told WJLA that "spitting on someone is not a hate crime. Maryland law is extremely specific about what constitutes a hate crime" and that "it has to be based upon someone's race, national origin, ethnicity, sexual orientation, religion or age or disability or homelessness ... right now what we know is that it was over a dollar bill, it wasn't over race."

But Smith added to the station that "if the facts warrant the charge of a hate crime, we'll charge it. If they don't, then we're not going to try to chase something that doesn't exist."

He also said he's reviewing the video of the attack and may charge more individuals, WJZ said.

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Dave Urbanski

Dave Urbanski

Sr. Editor, News

Dave Urbanski is a senior editor for Blaze News.
@DaveVUrbanski →