APTOS (CBS SF) — Three more teenage suspects have been arrested in connection with a vicious masked hammer attack on three teen victims at a home in Aptos late last May, according to authorities.

The Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s office announced on Tuesday that the three additional suspects — all age 15 and male residents of Watsonville — were taken into custody over the course of the last week, with the latest being arrested on Monday.

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A fourth teen suspect, arrested on June 1 was already in custody.

The incident happened early on the morning of May 28 at around 1:40 a.m. when four masked suspects broke into the garage of a home on the 100 block of Monte Vista Drive in Aptos and assaulted three teenage boys, ages 16 and 17, with hammers.

The three victims all suffered significant head injuries, with the 17-year-old victim requiring care at a trauma center.

A GoFundMe page was set up to raise money for that victim, identified as a 17-year-old high school student named Alex, collecting just over $50,000 to help with medical costs in the space of a month.

The two other teens who were taken to a hospital were released within a few days.

Authorities quickly arrested the first 15-year-old suspect within a few days of the attack. The teen faces charges of attempted murder, robbery, burglary and conspiracy.

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“This assault was beyond stupid and these suspects are fortunate nobody is dead as a result of this attack,” said Sheriff Jim Hart on the day of the June 1 arrest. “Our deputies are going to find every one of the suspects. They should turn themselves in now.”

Detectives continued their investigation into the incident in the weeks that followed, serving several search warrants and obtaining additional information about the suspects and the circumstances of the assault. Authorities were able to identify the motive for the attack as an attempt to steal cannabis and cash.

Working closely with the District Attorney’s Office, detectives were able to track down and arrest the additional 16-year-old suspects with the first being brought into custody on July 10, the second being arrested last week on July 12 and the third being arrested Monday.

The suspect arrested on July 10 is facing a charge of assault with a deadly weapon in addition to robbery and burglary charges. The other two suspects are facing charges of robbery, burglary and conspiracy.

“Sheriff Hart promised that everyone responsible for this brutal assault would be arrested,” said Undersheriff Craig Wilson. “These suspects need to be held accountable for what they did.”

Anyone with additional information about the case is asked to contact Sergeant Dee Baldwin at 831-454-7635.

 

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