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Trio of Bloomington Teens Now Facing Murder Charges

Three teenagers now face murder charges for the beating death of a homeless man in O'Neil Park in early June. Police say the violence against that victim was just part of a crime-filled night...
NORMAL - We're learning new details about the suspects arrested for a Bloomington man's death.

Three teenagers now face murder charges for the beating death of a homeless man in O'Neil Park in early June. Police say the violence against that victim was just part of a crime-filled night for the young men.

On June 3, Normal Police responded to a robbery call along the Constitution Trail. A group of teenagers had allegedly beaten a man and robbed him.

The victim was able to call police and Tory Washington, 19, and Anthony Davis Dickson and Willie Chambers, both 18, were arrested.

As it turns out, police say that arrest stopped a night of crimes.

"An outstanding response by an officer that was paying attention and was able to locate the suspects led to them being apprehended and before we had another incident,” said Lt. Paul Smith, head of investigations for the Normal Police Department.

That night started with the beating of 56-year-old Ronald Smith in Bloomington's O'Neil Park. Police say the suspects then robbed a business before heading over to Normal and robbing and attacking the second victim who called police.

Normal police are using clues from O'Neil Park as a link between several other incidents that took place that night.

"We started communicating more and more with Bloomington to link up with their cases and determine what we had possibly in evidence and statements that were made that might play a part in their cases,” said Smith.

"All of them, as a prosecutor, make me mad,” said McLean County State’s Attorney Jason Chambers.

The trio of teens was already in McLean County Jail on the Constitution Trail robbery charge when Ronald Smith died July 3.

"While that was going on, the investigation into that other incident was ongoing,” said Chambers.

The teens were arrested for Smith's murder shortly after that. Smith says vigilance near Uptown kept the night from becoming even worse.

"We have a lot of pedestrian traffic that we're always watching to make sure that things like this don't occur,” said Smith.

Bond for the teens has been set at $3 million. All are due back in court Friday.

Chambers says McLean county had gone more than a year without a first-degree murder case.

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