Friday, November 30, 2007

More Charges In High School Brawl

From today's WaPo:

By Raymond McCaffrey
Washington Post Staff Writer
Friday, November 30, 2007

A second young man accused of participating in a February brawl that left an 18-year-old dead outside a high school in Ellicott City has been charged with assault, the Howard County state's attorney's office said yesterday.

Corey M. Lehnhoff, 18, is alleged to have assaulted two people with an aluminum baseball bat and punched another person during the late-night fight outside Mount Hebron High School.

Lehnhoff, who, according to his attorney, was a friend of the teen who died, appeared to be an instigator of the brawl, charging documents state.

The fight involved about 20 young men, most connected to Mount Hebron or Hammond High School in Columbia. Robert Brazell Jr. of Ellicott City was fatally injured when he was struck in the head with an aluminum bat.

Kevin F. Klink, who graduated last year from Oakland Mills High School in Columbia, was charged with murder. His case is scheduled for trial in February.

Lehnhoff, of Ellicott City, and Brazell "were close friends, best friends" and had been students at Mount Hebron, said Lehnhoff's attorney, Joe Murtha.

"Now the focus has gone from Kevin Klink for being responsible and an aggressor to the people who may have been with Robby Brazell that evening," Murtha said.

Lehnhoff was indicted Wednesday and charged with two counts of first-degree assault, two counts of carrying a dangerous weapon and other counts, said Wayne Kirwan, a spokesman for the state's attorney's office.

Before the fight started, Lehnhoff, "out in front of a group of males, ripped off his shirt, approached an opposing male and began arguing. This act began the brawl that consisted of about twenty males," the charging documents state.

One witness said that Lehnhoff was "the biggest fight participant" in one of the groups and that Lehnhoff and Brazell "were standing in the front of the group of males that made up the opposing group," according to the documents.

Lehnhoff, who was 17 when the incident occurred, was charged as an adult.

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