Phoenix/ Crime & Emergencies
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Published on April 02, 2024
Seven "Gilbert Goons" Indicted for First-Degree Felony Murder in Preston Lord AssaultSource: X/FBI Most Wanted

Tragedy struck a Queen Creek Halloween party last October, escalating into a deadly assault on 16-year-old Preston Lord. According to a police report obtained by ABC15, Lord was one of several partygoers who were assaulted as tensions rose unprovoked at a gathering that had grown out of control with over 100 teens, costumes, and alcohol in the mix.

The chaos began with a "verbal argument between two individuals," which caught the attention of Preston and his friends. The confrontation intensified when suspect Treston Billey demanded the deletion of a video taken to be posted on Snapchat. Shortly after, fighting broke out, and the adult homeowner tried to disperse the crowd out of the party.

Outside, the violence continued. Billey, along with his group, followed and "taunted" Lord's group as they tried to leave. In the ensuing scuffle, Dominic Turner was reported to have snatched a necklace chain from one of the teens in Lord's group, which escalated to punches thrown by Jacob Meisner and others. "At that point, everyone started running" and Preston was chased down, eventually falling to the ground where he was "kicked and punched by multiple subjects," as the ABC15 report details.

The attack left Preston unconscious, and despite receiving immediate CPR from bystanders trained as lifeguards, he never regained consciousness and succumbed to his injuries days later. The lengthy police report not only details the events of the fateful night but also the aftermath which saw the homeowner slapped with misdemeanour charges for contributing to the delinquency of minors, ensued fights, and the complicated police response due to the congested streets.

Seven individuals, now known as part of the "Gilbert Goons," have been indicted with first-degree felony murder for their involvement in the incident, as per recent updates. Among them, Treston Billey's house was searched for evidence, and an ex-girlfriend of Talan Renner allegedly disclosed a disturbing message asserting his accidental involvement in a fatal fight. In light of such grim events, the community has been holding vigils while the local police chief has opened up in an interview with ABC15, discussing the urgency in addressing teen violence in the East Valley.