Teen charged with 4 counts of murder after police chase ended in fatal car crash

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WHAS11.com

Posted on December 19, 2008 at 7:07 PM

Updated Thursday, Oct 15 at 3:36 PM

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) -- A 16-year-old boy has been arrested and charged with four counts of murder after a police chase ended in a fatal car crash near downtown Louisville.

Louisville Metro Police spokeswoman Alicia Smiley says the boy was driving a stolen Honda Accord with four friends in it Thursday night when it hit a pole. Smiley said the car was stolen over the weekend from a western Louisville suburb.

Jefferson County deputy coroners R.D. Jones and Rita Taylor said that twins Jemar and Demar Claybrooks, 16, and Marc Claybrooks, 14, all died of multiple blunt-force injuries received in the crash.

Taylor said Jemar Claybrooks died after being taken to surgery at University Hospital while the others died at the scene.

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Jones said Arron K. Shields, 15, also died of his injuries at the scene.

Smiley says the driver's name was not being released because of his age. Prosecutors will decide whether to charge him as an adult, Smiley said.

Smiley said police are unsure if the four passengers who died were aware the car was stolen.

"I believe we haven't had an opportunity to talk with family and friends," Smiley said.

Christopher 2X, a spokesman for the Claybrooks family, said there's no indication that the boys knew the car was stolen.

"There are a lot of unanswered questions," 2X said. "We're hoping to get more answers."

Information from the families to the coroner's office indicated that the four had been at some kind of function near downtown before the crash.

The driver of the car was critically injured and taken to University Hospital. Smiley said he was arrested Friday morning. He's also charged with fleeing and evading police and receiving stolen property.

Smiley said the incident occurred about 8 p.m. Thursday in downtown Louisville. An officer saw the car and checked its license tag, then found out the car had been stolen.

Smiley said officers pulled over the Honda Accord, but when three officers walked toward the car, it sped off. Smiley said the driver lost control about five blocks later, near the University of Louisville, and the car crashed into a tree.

2X said the three brothers were described as "good children."

"I don't know if you can describe the family as devastated," 2X said. "They're just shell shocked."

The four who died were all students at Pleasure Ridge Park High School in southwest Louisville and grief counselors were at the school on Friday, said Lauren Roberts, a spokeswoman for Jefferson County Public Schools.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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