2 arrested in death of UB student in Toronto
Julian Jones was beaten Saturday outside nightclub
Toronto police have arrested two men in the fatal attack on a University of Baltimore student last weekend, alleging they beat him while he was already lying on the ground.
A third suspect remains at large, they said.
Julian Jones, 26, was in Canada’s largest city for a bachelor party to celebrate the upcoming wedding of a friend when he was punched and kicked in the head about 2:30 a.m. Saturday, police said. He was pronounced dead at a hospital.
Police said the attack was unprovoked and occurred after an altercation outside a nightclub between two other groups. Jones and his friends did nothing wrong, police said.
On Wednesday, police arrested without incident two Toronto men who they allege were involved in Jones’ beating: Kenneth Omorogbe, 25, and Kamari Folkes, 24. Both men have been charged with seconddegree murder, police said Thursday.
“These are definitely people who have been identified by witnesses as being party to the attack,” said Detective Sgt. Gary Giroux.
Video of the attack suggests that the injuries that led to Jones’ death were suffered while Jones was already unconscious and “in a vulnerable position on the ground,” Giroux said.
Both Omorogbe and Folkes made a brief appearance in a Toronto courtroom Thursday morning, according to the Toronto Star. They will remain in custody, with their next appearance in court scheduled for Nov. 22.
Both men have “some past criminal baggage,” Giroux said, but he did not elaborate. Court records show Folkes was convicted of an assault in 2011 and sentenced to a year of probation and $500 in restitution, the Star reported.
Giroux said police are still looking for a third suspect who was also identified through surveillance footage as being involved in Jones’ beating.
Police withheld photographs of Omorogbe and Folkes, and asked members of the media to do the same, because officers still have to interview witnesses. Those witnesses will be asked to identify suspects in the attack using photo lineups, and should not be exposed to images of the suspects beforehand, Giroux said.
“It’s going to be an identification-based prosecution. It’s not going to be a forensicbased prosecution,” he said.
As part of the ongoing investigation, Giroux said he or his investigators may need to travel to Baltimore to conduct additional interviews — including photographic lineups — with members of Jones’ group who were witnesses to portions of the attack.
Giroux may also solicit the help of Baltimore police in that process, he said.
Police thanked witnesses and businesses in the area where the attack occurred for their “tremendous cooperation.”
On Wednesday, Tobias Jones, the victim’s father, said Toronto police notified him that they had made arrests in the case.
“I’m feeling very enthusiastic about that conversation,” he said.
He said police told him he could share the information. He wants to keep his son’s death in people’s minds to help solve the case, he said.