The suspected killers of 88-year-old World War II veteran Delbert Belton are now both in custody, Spokane police reported Friday. Just a week after the senseless "for the fun of it" killing of a college baseball player in Oklahoma by three "bored" young men, two more have been arrested for the slaying of Belton. And the motive appears to be just as senseless, because the war vet was apparently chosen at random.
The Inquistr reported Aug. 23 that Spokane authorities said that the two youths chose Belton at random while he sat in his car outside an Eagles Lodge.
Belton's daughter-in-law, Bobbie, told CBS affiliate in Seattle KREM-TV that her father was beaten with flashlights.
“They used those great big heavy flashlights,” she said. “The doctors said he was bleeding from all parts of his face.”
The beating and death of the veteran has prompted a firestorm of outrage on various social media outlets.
Belton's roommate, Glenn Longsdorff, told the station that the man had been wounded in Okinawa when he was 18 years old. He added, "He’ll do anything in the world for anybody.”
In fact, friends say he was waiting on a friend at the Eagles Lodge in order to give him a ride.
The teens, Demetrius Glenn and Kenan Adams Kinard, both 16 years of age, were being held on charges of robbery and first degree murder. The Associated Press disclosed the name of the latter suspect when police announced a manhunt for the individual in connection to the beating. Glenn turned himself in.
Both have juvenile records, authorities report.
Delbert Belton died as result of his injuries Thursday.
"It does appear random," Spokane police Lt. Mark Griffiths told reporters, according to CNN. "It appears he was assaulted in the parking lot and there was no indication that he would have known these people prior to the assault."
It is believed Belton was also chosen for his diminutive stature. Barely five feet tall, Belton's nickname was "Shorty."
Ted Denison, a friend of Belton's and a fellow military veteran, told KREM, “He put his life on the line for our country to come home and 60 years later? Get beat to death?” He added, “That’s not right.”