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WARREN Howland seniors to face court in beating of JFK ninth-grader



Published: Thu, November 15, 2001 @ 12:00 a.m.



Other than several bruises, the 14-year-old is OK, his mother said.

By PEGGY SINKOVICH

VINDICATOR TRUMBULL STAFF

WARREN -- An assistant city prosecutor says he's going forward with the case against two Howland teens accused of beating a John F. Kennedy High School ninth-grader, even though the identification of one suspect was in question this morning.

Police Chief John Mandopoulos said warrants were issued Wednesday for two Howland High School senior football players, but one of those warrants may have been issued for the wrong person.

"We certainly don't want the wrong person charged," the chief said. "We sat down last night with the victim and his mother and it seems that we may now have the wrong person. We are going to try and sort this out today."

According to municipal court records, warrants on charges of assault and criminal trespassing were issued Wednesday for Michael Post, 18, of Castle Rock, and Sean Unger, 18, of Irene Avenue.

Mandopoulos said this morning that police expected to dismiss the charges against Unger because there was a question about whether he was misidentified as one of the assailants, but Nick Graham, an assistant city prosecutor, said later that the charges would stand and the case against both would proceed.

Victim's mother: Kim Gunther, 36, mother of the victim, Marlin Williamson, 14, of Southwest Boulevard, told police the two punched her son in the head and face Tuesday afternoon.

"He has two black eyes and his nose is black and blue," Gunther told The Vindicator. She said her son was knocked unconscious for a short time.

Marlin was treated at Forum Health Trumbull Memorial Hospital.

"He is OK now, but I can't believe he had to go through this," said Gunther.

Police reports say the two Howland teens went to JFK on Central Parkway on Tuesday afternoon.

Gunther said the two teens told her son they were looking for the football team's quarterback, and Marlin then told school officials.

What happened next: Police said a vice principal told the Howland students to leave, which they did.

Gunther said that the two Howland teens followed when her son got a ride with a friend to a street off Eastland.

"He was then jumped by these two," Gunther said. "I don't know if they got scared because he went unconscious or if they got tired of hitting him, but they finally left."

Frank Thomas, principal at Howland High School, said he was surprised by the news. He said Post and Unger, who was crowned homecoming king this fall, have not had any previous problems.

"This is out of character," Thomas said.

Mandopoulos said police heard that there was to be another fight Wednesday afternoon, so he had several cruisers drive around JFK. No fights took place.

sinkovich@vindy.com




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