Army Man Killed for Being White (Hate Crime)
Washington cops have busted three men accused in the fatal stabbing of a soldier — and police say the suspects are soldiers too.
Authorities originally investigated the killing as a hate crime because the dead soldier was white, and the attackers reportedly yelled "cracker" before the stabbing. Further investigation revealed that may not be the case.
Army Spc. Tevin Geike and two friends were walking early Saturday morning in Lakewood when they encountered the men.
Soldier Matthew Barnes told KIRO TV he yelled back:
“So this is how we treat combat veterans now?”
The car turned around. Five men hopped out and surrounded the three soldiers. The two groups argued, police said, but the driver called it off when he learned the soldiers were combat vets.
They headed back to the car, but one man “appeared to bump” Geike, police said.
Geike collapsed to the pavement bleeding. He’d been stabbed in the heart.
Cops now say the attackers were fellow servicemen at Joint Base Lewis-McChord sout of Tacoma. A sergeant contacted police on Sunday after another soldier came forward, KIRO reported. The soldier claimed 23-year-old Jeremiah Hill asked him for help, telling him he'd cut his hand while stabbing a guy to death. The sergeant confronted Hill who reportedly claimed he cut his hand while chopping vegetables.
Hill was treated at Madigan Hospital for the cut and allegedly told the staff yet another story: He sliced his hand while cutting parachute cord.
Another soldier, who was in the car with Hill, told cops a similar version of the story reported by Geike's friends: They exchanged words with the white soldiers but backed off when they learned they were all servicemen — all except for Hill who bear hugged Geike before he fell to the ground.
It was only when Hill got back into the car that they realized he was covered in the blood.
Barnes told cops he saw the men drive off in a dark blue BMW or Volkswagen as he cradled his dying friend.
“I’m sitting here holding him, trying to stop the bleeding with my right hand and calling 911 with my left, screaming at them and trying to get them here,” Barnes said. “Right before I got off the phone, I couldn’t feel a heartbeat anymore, and he was gone.”
Police searched Hill's barracks and seized a car they believe was used in the attack. Cops also arrested 21-year-olds Cedarium Johnson and Ajoni Runnion-Bareford.
Hill refused to talk to detectives and asked for a lawyer, cops said.
Police originally said they suspected the killing was a hate crime. They backed off on Tuesday, saying that now doesn't seem to be the case.
Geike, originally from South Carolina, joined the Army in 2010 and was stationed in 2011 at the Joint Base Lewis-McChord, south of Tacoma. He was trained as an aviation operations specialist.
Geike had celebrated his impending discharge from the Army earlier in the night at the Biltmore Motel, friends said.
“I don’t understand how someone can do this,” friend Glenn Zimmerman told KOMO News. “That man — he almost gave his life for people to enjoy the freedoms they have and he was stabbed for no (expletive) reason,” Zimmerman said.
As news of the attack spread to party goers, Zimmerman raced to his friend’s side. He said Geike was already dead
What was it all over — just because they were some white boys?” Zimmerman said.
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Re: Army Man Killed for Being White (Hate Crime)
Fixed the title. Great thread! Thanks.
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