A Florida teenager is accused of murdering a 13-year-old boy and injuring two others in a stabbing attack, which he said was “because of his Muslim faith.”
ABC 10 reports that 17-year-old Corey Johnson will face charges of first-degree murder after officers attended a scene in Palm Beach Gardens on Monday where 13-year-old Jovanni Brand was dead, while mother Elaine Simon and her 13-year-old son Dane Bancroft were also found suffering from stab wounds.
Police said officers arrived at the home and found Elaine Simon and her 13-year-old son, Dane Bancroft, suffering from stab wounds. They were taken to St. Mary’s Medical Center in West Palm Beach to be treated for their injuries.
Officers then found Jovanni Brand dead on the floor in an upstairs loft. It was his 13th birthday.
According to a police report, Johnson was spending the night at the home of a friend, while Brand was spending the night there as a guest of the friend’s older brother.
“Elaine heard what she believed to be Jovanni moaning and went upstairs to see what was going on,” Officer Jennifer Brashear wrote in the probable cause affidavit. “As she got to the top of the stairs, Johnson lunged at her with a knife, cutting her multiple times.”
Simon told police that Dane ran toward Johnson “to protect his mother and Johnson then began to stab Dane.”
Police said Simon’s other son, Kyle Bancroft, 15, wasn’t hurt.
During an interview with detectives, Johnson said he bought the knife Sunday and brought it with him to the sleepover.
“Johnson advised at 4 a.m. he realized that everyone in the house was asleep,” the affidavit said. “At that time, Johnson made the decision to kill Elaine, Dane and Jovanni in their sleep.”
Police said Johnson went to the loft where Jovanni was sleeping, stabbed him multiple times and cut his throat.
Johnson reportedly carried out the attack because Jovanni was idolizing celebrities as Gods, which offended his Muslim faith while he also felt Bancroft “made fun” of his religious beliefs.
“In his statement, Johnson advised he stabbed the victims because of his Muslim faith,” Brashear wrote in the affidavit, adding that he was reading the Qu’ran beforehand to “give him the courage to carry out his intentions.”
Johnson is currently detained at a juvenile detention facility, where a grand jury will soon decide to charge him as an adult or minor.
Mr Americana, Overpasses News Desk
March 15th, 2018