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Tevin Geike Murder: Three soldiers arrested in stabbing death of fellow soldier in Wash., authorities say

Tevin Geike
KIRO

(CBS/AP) LAKEWOOD, Wash. - Authorities investigating Saturday's stabbing death of Tevin Geike, a Washington-based soldier, said Monday they have arrested three other soldiers who serve at the same military installation.

PICTURES: Three soldiers arrested in stabbing death of fellow soldier

Police in Lakewood, Wash., where the incident took place, said all five suspects in the stabbing of the 20-year-old Geike are soldiers at Joint Base Lewis-McChord. At least two of the five suspects in the case are cooperating with law enforcement, authorities said.

CBS affiliate KIRO reports the three men were booked on investigation of murder charges shortly after 4 a.m. Monday.

Police say the arrests were made after detectives received a tip from military personnel who claimed one of the suspects, Jeremiah Hill, had asked for first aid Saturday for a knife wound on his right hand.

A soldier stated that Hill said he cut his hand when stabbing a guy to death over the weekend, authorities said.

Police described Hill, 23, as the "main suspect" in the case and said he did not make a statement and asked for a lawyer. Cedarium Johnson, 21, and Ajoni Runnion-Bareford, 21, were also booked into the Pierce County Jail on Monday morning, according to Lakewood police.

Detectives had been investigating whether the stabbing was racially motivated -- and potentially a hate crime -- but said Monday after interviewing those involved that it does not appear that race was a factor.

Lakewood police had said Geike was walking with two friends when a car drove by and someone inside shouted a racial comment toward the white soldiers. Authorities said the soldiers shouted something back, and a group of five black men from the car stopped and surrounded the soldiers.

Police said the men in the car began to leave but one of the suspects appeared to bump into Geike as he walked past. Geike's friends discovered he had been stabbed.

Geike had reportedly been out celebrating the end of his service prior to the attack.

KIRO reports police seized the vehicle the suspects were in the night of the attack and barracks rooms were searched and multiple items of evidence were found.

The motivation for the attack remains unclear.

Complete coverage of Tevin Geike on Crimesider

  • Stephanie Slifer

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