St. Louis Citizens Protest Murder of Zemir Begic
A 32-year-old Bosnian man was killed with a hammer
Less than a week after the protests began in Ferguson, Missouri, over the controversial grand jury decision, another protest started nearby – this time, for a completely different killing.
Zemir Begic, a 32-year-old immigrant from Bosnia, according to Fox News, was bludgeoned to death on Sunday, allegedly by a group of teenagers. When he confronted them, he was struck in the mouth, face, head and body with hammers and died at a nearby hospital.
The murder has sparked outrage within the Bosnian community.
On Monday, hundreds took to the streets with homemade signs, according to Wave3.
“We’ve made three arrests in this case so far,” Chief Sam Dotson of the St. Louis police told the network.
Some people in the community say the attack was racially motivated, but St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay believes otherwise.
“There is no evidence that this was a crime occasioned by the race or ethnicity of the victim,” Slay told the Associated Press.
According to the probable cause statement, Begic, who was with his fiancée and two other individuals, approached their car and heard a group of four people yelling. As they entered the car, someone jumped on the back of his car and began hitting it.
Unsure of what was happening, Begic got out and was taunted. A fight ensued, and all four men started to assault him.
“Too many young boys are getting killed for no reason,” community leader Rusmin Topalovic, 38, told the AP. “We just need more attention from police.”
An autopsy revealed that he had sustained multiple injuries consistent with blunt force trauma to the head. It also revealed multiple injuries, including bruises and lacerations on his head and upper body.
On Monday, police charged Robert Joseph Mitchell, 17, as an adult with first-degree murder and armed criminal action. Two others, ages 15 and 16, are in custody, and a fourth suspect remains at large.