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Teens laugh and point after allegedly beating and butchering Wyoming boy who tried to protect his girlfriend
Photo by ANDRI TAMBUNAN/AFP via Getty Images

Teens laugh and point after allegedly beating and butchering Wyoming boy who tried to protect his girlfriend

Robert Dean Maher Jr. of Casper, Wyoming, reportedly received a concerned call from his girlfriend Sunday indicating that a pair of teens were stalking her and her friend around the Eastridge Mall. The chivalrous 14-year-old made his way over to help but was savagely stabbed to death.

The Casper Police Department announced that they have arrested two teens in connection with Maher's slaying.

According to the Cowboy State Daily, the suspected killer is 15-year-old Jarreth Joseflee Sabstian Plunkett of Evansville. Plunkett now faces charges of first-degree murder, conspiracy to commit murder, aggravated assault and battery, and theft. He has been charged as an adult.

He apparently did not work alone. Dominique Harris of Casper, 15, was also arrested and charged with conspiracy to commit first-degree murder, aggravated assault and battery, and theft.

In court, police referenced cellphone footage captured by a witness revealing the victim "clearly did not want to fight," reported the Oil City News. The victim's friend told police that upon finding the girls at the mall, he simply tried to escort them away to keep them safe.

Chief Deputy District Attorney Blaine Nelson indicated that upon learning that Maher had made it to the mall, the suspects stole knives from Target then went to confront their victim.

While Maher managed to make it outside the mall, the aggressors precluded him from getting much farther.

According to the affidavit, one of the accused murderers, wearing a balaclava at the time, told Maher "to swing on him several times; however, (Maher) clearly did not want to fight as he is seen moving in a continuous backwards motion away from Jarreth."

"However, due to numerous other juveniles gathering around, it appeared as if he was unable to get back inside the mall," continued the affidavit.

Casper Police noted that other individuals potentially involved in the case "have been identified and questioned by law enforcement, and further action may be forthcoming."

When Plunkett allegedly brandished the large kitchen knife, Oil City News indicated Maher said, "Put the knife away, this isn't fair."

Plunkett allegedly responded, "I don't play fair."

In video of the slaying, Harris can allegedly be seen grabbing Maher by the waist and slamming him into the ground near the Hibachi Supreme Buffet in the mall. Plunkett then allegedly stabbed Maher twice in the chest with a "kitchen-style knife" while Harris punched the boy in the face.

After the attack, camera footage showed the victim grip his bloody abdomen, stagger through the mall's exterior doorway, then collapse, reported KGWN-TV. A third suspect apparently kicked Maher after his stabbing.

"They were seen laughing and pointing as they ran through the parking lot while witnesses attempted first aid," said Nelson.

Wyoming is a death penalty state.

CPD Sgt. Michael Paschke swiftly responded to the scene and took over for the adults administering CPR. The boy later succumbed to his injuries at the hospital.

CPD Lt. Scott Jones said, "An unfortunate thing where a young man was assaulted and died of his wounds. We feel for the family, friends, classmates of that student. Just a tragedy regardless. A tragedy because we have other juveniles involved whether suspects or bystanders," reported the Casper Star Tribune.

"In my time in law enforcement, this doesn't happen," continued Jones. "We've been seeing an increase in frequency and severity [of youth crime] over the last several years. Just an unfortunate trend of our times."

It appears this was not a random attack.

Investigators indicated that Plunkett allegedly told Harris that he was going to "gut that dude" three days earlier. The victim and both suspects attended Dean Morgan Junior High together.

Ashlyn Benbo, an apparent friend of the victim's family, noted in a GoFundMe campaign that has raised over $40,000 for his funeral expenses that Maher "left behind his dad Robert, his mom Mary and his 3 brothers."

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Joseph MacKinnon

Joseph MacKinnon

Joseph MacKinnon is a staff writer for Blaze News.
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