Members of an affluent Arizona gang known as the “Gilbert Goons” were arrested last week in connection to a string of violent caught-on-video attacks on teenagers.
Authorities in Gilbert, Arizona arrested two men for their involvement in the gang beatings of high school students Wednesday, and warned additional arrests could be coming, The Arizona Republic reported.
The so-called “Gilbert Goons” have terrorized the community for over a year, and are reportedly involved in the Oct. 28 fatal beating of Preston Lord, a 16-year-old killed during a Halloween party.
Authorities arrested Jacob Pennington, 21, in connection to the brutal videotaped beating of a 16-year-old high school student on Nov. 19, which took place just two weeks after Lord’s death.
Cellphone footage of that beating shows a group of attackers circling the victim, taking turns hitting and knocking the boy over as he attempts to escape.
The attackers chase the victim and pummel him with their feet and fists, knocking him into the concrete, the video shows.
The unidentified boy, who suffered minor injuries, was unable to identify his attackers, cops said. According to the Republic, Pennington has been identified in at least one other video-recorded attack.
Police on Wednesday also confirmed the arrest of Christopher Fantastic, 18, who was involved in the Aug. 18 beating of a 16-year-old boy at the Gilbert In-N-Out Burger.
Fantastic faces assault and robbery charges and was being held on $25,000 bond, according to the Republic.
There were other accomplices in the case, prosecutors said Wednesday, noting the attack was one of several in Gilbert carried out by a group of people that include Fantastic.
Records reviewed by The Republic indicate three other people were cited Tuesday in the assault and released.
One of those cited, Aris Arredondo, was listed as an adult while the two others were juveniles.
Following Fantastic’s arrest, the Gilbert Town Council on Tuesday created a subcommittee to investigate teen violence, with Mayor Brigette Petersen saying the issue has “gutted” her.
Most of the gang’s attacks were unleashed in Gilbert and included similar victims and many of the same perpetrators, who would later share photos and videos of the thrashings online, according to reports.
Police said they never connected the attacks because victims never mentioned the gang. The group also did not have any police reports linking them to criminal activity.
Gilbert Police Chief Michael Soelberg said officers are currently investigating nine active investigations related to teen violence, four of which are reopened cases.