3 Teens Charged In Immigrant Beating Death

**CORRECTS TODAY'S DATE----FILE** In this file photo provided Crystal Dillman, Luis Ramirez lies in his hospital bed hours before his death at Geisinger Medical Center in Danville, Pa.. Ramirez, 25, an illegal immigrant from Mexico, died Monday, July 14, 2008 from injuries he received in a beating in Shenandoah, Pa. Three white teens were charged Friday, July 25, 2008 in what officials said was an epithet-filled fatal beating of an illegal Mexican immigrant in the small northeast Pennsylvania coal town. (AP Photo/Crystal Dillman)
AP Photo/Crystal Dillman
Three white teens were charged Friday in what officials said was an epithet-filled fatal beating of an illegal Mexican immigrant in a small northeast Pennsylvania coal town.

Brandon J. Piekarsky, 16, and Colin J. Walsh, 17, were charged as adults with homicide and ethnic intimidation in the July 12 attack on Luis Ramirez.

A third teen, Derrick M. Donchak, 18, was charged with aggravated assault, ethnic intimidation and other offenses. All are from Shenandoah, where the attack occurred.

Ramirez, 25, was beaten to death after an argument with a group of youths that police said included high school football players. Authorities could not immediately say if any of the suspects were members of the team, but they confirmed that all three used ethnic slurs during the fight.

"As a result of this crime, a young man has lost his life. Many other lives have been devastated, and the borough of Shenandoah has been filled with tensions between many ethnic groups," Schuylkill County District Attorney James Goodman said.

"Now that the criminal charges have been filed, we must let this case be handled in the criminal justice system," he said.

Police said as many as six teens were involved in the fight, which ended with Ramirez in convulsions and foaming at the mouth. He died July 14 of head injuries.

Crystal Dillman, the victim's 24-year-old fiancee, who is white and grew up in Shenandoah, has said Ramirez was often called derogatory names, including "dirty Mexican," and told to return to his homeland.

"I plan on moving out of this town as fast as I can. Not because I'm scared. I just don't want to see my children have to deal with what their father dealt with," Dillman said.

Piekarsky and Walsh were being held without bail, while Donchak was held on $75,000 bail.

Lawyers for Piekarsky and Walsh said their clients were not guilty and that there was no evidence to support the homicide charges. They also said they would try to have the case removed to juvenile court.

Donchak declined comment.