Brett Boettler, 16, is facing first and second-degree murder charges in the deaths of two black men whose dismembered bodies were found chained to cinderblocks, while his family all face accessory charges in a reported “gun sale gone bad,” The Associated Press reports. Alize Smith and Jarron Moreland's bodies were found dismembered in an Oklahoma City pond after being reported missing for four days.
While Boettler, along with his brother Kevin Garcia-Boettler, mother Crystal Boettler and her boyfriend Johnny Barker are all white, authorities say the crime was not racially motivated.
“We definitely explored that, and the evidence absolutely shows that this was not racially motivated,” said Cleveland County prosecutor Greg Mashburn.
The murders are still part of many conversations across social media comparing them to lynchings.
Reportedly, the whole incident started from a pre-arranged meeting to purchase a gun from Moreland and Smith. After the Boettler brothers picked up both men in their van, Garcia-Boettler told police he heard a gun cock and that was when Boettler fired his gun. After that, the brothers reportedly went to their mother's house, then getting help from her and boyfriend Barker with disposing of Moreland and Smith's bodies. They were removed from the van, covered with a tarp, attached to cinder blocks and dumped into the pond.
ABC reports that detectives later would find the van in question, which Barker admitted to having helped clean in order to destroy evidence. They found “cleaning products and a power washer around the vehicle,” “dried blood spatter on the ceiling of the van,” as well as “a bucket of water with a chainsaw bar inside and soaking in the water along with several jigsaw blades.”
While Boettler is also charged with having a gun after juvenile conviction, he along with Garcia-Boettler and Barker also face charges for the desecration of a corpse and unlawful removal of a body. Boettler's mother only faces charges of being an accessory to murder, charges Garcia-Boettler and Barker also face.
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