Friday, April 12, 2024

Victims remain hospitalized

April 6, 2001

Hospitality business junior Justin Jones remains in critical condition in the Intensive Care Unit at Lansing’s Sparrow Hospital after being assaulted in East Lansing on Saturday.

Jones, a St. Clair Shores resident, was beaten outside the Sunoco Food Market, 111 E. Saginaw Street, following the MSUmen’s basketball game.

East Lansing police Capt. Juli Liebler said a suspect has been identified in the incident that left the 22-year-old with a serious head injury. Charges against the suspect will be sought early next week.

In a separate incident late Saturday night, 24-year-old Evan Brown, an MSU employee, was assaulted outside the Delta Chi fraternity house, 101 Woodmere Ave.

While Brown was upgraded from serious condition to fair condition Thursday, according to officials at Lansing Sparrow Hospital, no suspect has been identified.

Witnesses have described the suspect who delivered the punch that fractured Brown’s skull to be a white male, five-foot-10-inches tall. He was wearing a white long sleeved T-shirt and a backward baseball cap at the time of the incident.

“We’ve had a couple of conflicting stories,” Liebler said. “We’ve spoken with several people who observed the fight, but nobody who actually knows the suspect.”

The two assaults follow a similar incident last fall, when 24-year-old Brandon D’Annunzio of Livonia died at Sparrow Hospital after being assaulted outside BW-3, 220 M.A.C. Ave.

D’Annunzio suffered a severe head injury, fractured skull and blood clot in his brain as a result of the attack.

While police have released sketches of three suspects - two men and one woman - in the Oct. 1 attack, only one witness has come forward with information. A $10,000 reward is being offered.

Liebler said the circumstances in each of the cases are very similar, and police are working to control the types of problems that lead to assaults.

“All three involve a head injury, all three involve alcohol, all three stem from a fist fight rather than a weapon being involved,” she said. “In East Lansing, we’ve always had fights. Lately, it seems that people are being more seriously injured.

“We’re certainly concerned about it. I hope that young adults understand that type of behavior can be very detrimental. It can seriously affect your life and someone else’s life.”

Brandon’s father, Dennis D’Annunzio, said people don’t realize how much alcohol can affect their judgment, how much damage one fist can do or how it will affect the families of the victims.

“People think they can kick, punch and hit a hundred times and walk away,” he said. “That’s not the way it is. It’s a terrible thing. It’s endemic of our society nowadays.

“The best thing I can say about this whole thing is when I get off the phone with my family, they all say they love me. We all knew that, but now it’s stated. It’s the families that get hurt.”

Anyone with information about the incidents should call the East Lansing Police Department at 337-2599 or the tip line at 1-877-ELPD-TIP.


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