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Three School Bullies ‘Set Teenager On Fire

The day he was set on fire, Michael Brewer didn’t attend classes at his middle school because he was afraid he might get beaten up by some other boys.

It was a Monday in October 2009, the day after his 15th birthday. There had been a dispute between Brewer and Matthew ‘Zeke’ Bent over a video game and a bicycle that led to Bent’s arrest.

And Bent, like Brewer a student at Deerfield Beach Middle School, was not happy about it.

Zeke wanted revenge on Michael,’ said Jesus ‘Junior’ Mendez, who would take part in the attack on Brewer, which drew national attention for its barbarity and the youthfulness of those involved.

Mendez would later plead no contest to attempted murder. ‘Zeke’s the main one. It was Zeke’s idea.’

Bent, now 17, faces a trial in June on attempted murder charges that carry a potential 30-year prison sentence because a weapon was used. He has pleaded not guilty.

Mendez and a third boy, 17-year-old Denver ‘D.C.’ Jarvis, have already admitted their roles in setting Brewer ablaze and have been sentenced to 11 years and eight years behind bars, respectively.

Police video and audio recordings made by the seven boys involved and several other witnesses give an account of a chance discovery and a split-second decision that almost killed Brewer.

As it was, he spent months in the hospital with second- and third-degree burns over more than two-thirds of his body.

The chain of events began at a neighborhood park on October 11, 2009 – Brewer’s birthday.

Bent approached Brewer and demanded that Brewer buy from him a video game based on the Little Mermaid movie. Brewer refused and walked home, with Bent following.

Once they reached the Brewer home, police say Bent tried to steal a bicycle and also stood on the street yelling threats at Brewer family members, even challenging Brewer’s father to come outside and fight.

‘He came to my house. He tried to take my dad’s bike. He threatened me. He threatened my sister. He goes, ‘Don’t worry, I got something for you and your friends, too,” Brewer told police. ‘It was because he wanted me to buy something from him that I didn’t want to buy.’

Fearing retaliation, Brewer’s parents notified school administrators they were keeping him home the following day. A little after school let out at 2:40pm, Brewer decided to walk over to a friend’s house.

At the same time, Bent was wheeling around the neighborhood on his bicycle. He hadn’t gone to school, either.

The Heat Reporter
The Heat Reporterhttp://theheatmag.com
Known in entertainment circles as "LA Dre", the Editor of The Heat Magazine works tirelessly to bring you the latest & greatest in entertainment news. He spent years in the industry & now brings some of that insider knowledge to his readers.


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