Sat. Apr 20th, 2024
alert-–-second-arizona-teen-talyn-vigil,-17,-‘admitted-to-punching-preston-lord,-16,-at-party’-after-he-was-beaten-to-death-by-‘gilbert-goons’-gang-–-whose-wealthy-parents-‘tried-to-silence-witnesses-in-cover-up’Alert – Second Arizona teen Talyn Vigil, 17, ‘ADMITTED to punching Preston Lord, 16, at party’ after he was beaten to death by ‘Gilbert Goons’ gang – whose wealthy parents ‘tried to SILENCE witnesses in cover up’

One of the Arizona teenagers accused of beating a 16-year-old boy to death reportedly confessed to being one of his attackers shortly after the murder.

Talyn Vigil, 19, is understood to have written on Snapchat that he punched another teen at the Halloween party before Preston Lord was killed by assailants with links to a gang known as the ‘Gilbert Goons’.

He later tried to distance himself from the killing by pointing the finger at another teen now also accused in the boy’s murder, with a similar first name, Talan Renner.

Vigil was not charged for months after the horrific attack as the parents of several suspects were accused of trying to cover up the crime.

Preston died after being brutally beaten outside a Halloween party last October and left on a road in Queen Creek, Arizona.

Multiple teens connected to the so-called ‘Gilbert Goons’ – a group of wealthy white kids who have been terrorizing the Phoenix suburbs since 2022 – were arrested.

It took five months, but Renner, 17, Dominic Turner, 20, Vigil, 19, Taylor Sherman, 19, Jacob Meisner, 17, William Hines, 18, and Treston Billey, 18, were arrested.

Preston Lord, 16, was left to die on a Queen Creek road outside Phoenix after being attacked at the party on October 28 and suffering critical wounds

Preston Lord, 16, was left to die on a Queen Creek road outside Phoenix after being attacked at the party on October 28 and suffering critical wounds

Just days after the murder, a screengrab of a Snapchat chat began circulating online that appeared to be written by one Talyn Vigil, one of the teens now charged in the killing

Just days after the murder, a screengrab of a Snapchat chat began circulating online that appeared to be written by one Talyn Vigil, one of the teens now charged in the killing 

The Snapchat post read: 'I hit a kid and this kid feel hit his head and then they kicked his head in the ground then I got word he died so idk'

The Snapchat post read: ‘I hit a kid and this kid feel hit his head and then they kicked his head in the ground then I got word he died so idk’

After the post caught the community's attention, Talyn posted the above public message on his Snapchat account

After the post caught the community’s attention, Talyn posted the above public message on his Snapchat account

Just days after the murder, a screengrab of a Snapchat chat was circulated that appeared to be written by Vigil, one of the teens now charged in the killing.

The post read: ‘I hit a kid and this kid feel hit his head and then they kicked his head in the ground then I got word he died so idk.’

After the post caught the community’s attention, Talyn posted a public message on his Snapchat account that read: ‘Yo I understand everyone is hurting right now and wants to find the kids that did this but you got the wrong talyn… the real kids name is talan renner. Please stop accusing me I was there I tried to help the kid off the street thank you.’

At least one other alleged attacker, Talan Renner, also admitted – and even bragged about –  beating Preston in the days after the party, writing on Snapchat: ‘I got in a fight, a big group fight and I accidentally killed a kid. I guess I’m just too.’

Police records allege one unnamed boy danced on the dying teen’s body shortly after the beating, while others performed ‘humping’ – simulated rape acts – to further degrade their victim. 

The millionaire gym owners’ son is also said to have shown a video of the fatal beating he’d recorded on his phone to friends while declaring: ‘Oh, I put this kid on life support.’ 

Despite the suspects’ name being an open secret in the community, as well as dozens of young witnesses of the attack at the party, police did not make any announcements on Preston’s case for months. 

Frustrated by what they saw as negligence by authorities, the Gilbert community began speaking up online and sharing details of what happened the night of the murder, demanding the killers were held accountable.

They began holding vigils and protests calling for justice, with Kristine Brennan and Angela Rogers creating a forum they named ‘Lily Waterfield’ where they would post updates and go after the now-official suspects and their parents.

High school football star Talan Renner, 17, is also charged in the killing. His father has been accused by a former employee of trying to hide his involvement in Preston's murder

High school football star Talan Renner, 17, is also charged in the killing. His father has been accused by a former employee of trying to hide his involvement in Preston’s murder

Arizona businessman Travis Renner has been accused of trying to help his teen son cover up the murder

Arizona businessman Travis Renner has been accused of trying to help his teen son cover up the murder 

Travis Renner's other son Kyler has been charged in connection with two gang attacks at a parking garage and a house party in 2022

Travis Renner’s other son Kyler has been charged in connection with two gang attacks at a parking garage and a house party in 2022

Through the process, they connected violent incidents tied to the Goons and narrowed in on what they say is the their modus operandi. Brennan said the teen assailants seem to follow the same pattern, meeting up at gas stations or fast food restaurants before targeting a young man and filming the assault.

Suspects Jacob Meisner and William Hines were already in custody when they were charged for Preston’s murder over other attacks on teens. 

Hines is also accused three aggravated assault cases – an attack outside an In-N-Out restaurant, an attack at a house party, and for using a car to hit somebody. Meanwhile Meisner is accused of being part of an attack at a Gilbert house party in 2022 and an attack at a Mesa park in 2023. 

‘We have started calling this Organized Bullying – groups of kids who can act out with impunity because there is a larger group that helps them,’ said Brennan who alongside Rogers has been leading the movement to demand justice for Preston – with his family’s blessing.

‘[The Goons] ruined this community because they think they can do whatever they want.

The months police spent investigating Preston’s murder allowed the parents of suspect Talan Renner to attempt a cover up that included taking him out of town for his towns to heal, according to prosecutors and to Ashley Reynolds, a former employee of Renner’s father Travis at his media company, Relentless Media Agency.

Reynolds told The Arizona Republic Travis and his business partner Adam Kifer were working on a cover up within days of the murder and openly discussed their plans to hide evidence and shift blame on another boy with a ‘similar name.’

Taylor Sherman (left) Dominic Turner (center), William Owen Hines top (right) have been charged with murder and kidnapping

Taylor Sherman (left) Dominic Turner (center), William Owen Hines top (right) have been charged with murder and kidnapping

Treston Billey is another suspect in Preston's killing. All the suspects remain under arrest

Treston Billey is another suspect in Preston’s killing. All the suspects remain under arrest

‘They talked about how they would never [go to the police] … They said they had plenty of money; they would be able to get away with this,’ she told The Arizona Republic.

Preston’s beating was part of some sort of initiation, as Talan wanted to participate in beatings like the ones carried out by the Gilbert Goons, Reynolds said. 

Talan’s brother Kyler is currently in jail facing charges connected to Goons’ activities.

Police told Arizona Republic that they have spoken to Reynolds, and their investigation coincides with her claims.  

‘We knew Talan had been taken up north for his hands to heal and police weren’t doing anything about it,’ Brennan said of the days after the murder. ‘We were watching the Renners try to save their business in real time in the weeks after the murder.’ 

Brennan explained that the community began leaving Yelp reviews shaming one of the Renner’s businesses, and they watched as the Renners worked to add new comments to flush out the negative ones. 

Soon, they began receiving legal threats from the suspect’s parents, with Jacob’s mother Wendi threatening legal action on Facebook.

Wendi wrote in November: ‘My son was at the party, but had no involvement with Preston. Would you turn your child in if he was at a party where something awful happened? For you and everyone on here to judge and attack my family, parenting and livelihood is completely unacceptable and full blown slander.

The Gilbert community began holding vigils and protests calling for justice for Preston, with Kristine Brennan (right) and Angela Rogers creating a forum they named 'Lily Waterfield' where they would post updates on the case and call out the suspects

The Gilbert community began holding vigils and protests calling for justice for Preston, with Kristine Brennan (right) and Angela Rogers creating a forum they named ‘Lily Waterfield’ where they would post updates on the case and call out the suspects

Soon, they began receiving legal threats from the suspect's parents, with Jacob's mother Wendi threatening legal action on Facebook

Soon, they began receiving legal threats from the suspect’s parents, with Jacob’s mother Wendi threatening legal action on Facebook

Wendi is seen with her son, accused murderer Jacob Meisner

Wendi is seen with her son, accused murderer Jacob Meisner 

‘Your page is causing threats and more violence and false accusations. Trying to ruin other lives does not bring justice to Preston. We will have no choice but to take legal action due to all these damages. 

Jacob was later charged with Preston’s murder. 

Brennan and Rogers said that while they feared legal action against them, they could not stop their campaign for justice knowing how much suffering the gang of teens was causing. 

‘I knew then how important it was for our teens that we didn’t or let Fear dictate our response. I was angry that these parents were attacking us rather than turning their sons in for their heinous crimes,’ Rogers said.

Brennan added: ‘Our fear of a lawsuit compares nothing to the fear we are experiencing just allowing our teens to be teens. It’s scarier for our teens than us. Their kids needed to be behind bars where it was safer for our community.

‘It’s scarier for our teens than us. Their kids needed to be behind bars where it’s safer for our community.’

Jacob, who has been charged in other Goon assaults and shared images holding what appeared to be a gun, was later charged with Preston's murder

Jacob, who has been charged in other Goon assaults and shared images holding what appeared to be a gun, was later charged with Preston’s murder

Brennen and Rogers are still working for justice for Preston, which they say includes accountability against anyone who tried to cover up the crime

Brennen and Rogers are still working for justice for Preston, which they say includes accountability against anyone who tried to cover up the crime

Nick Lord, father of Preston Lord and stepmother Melissa Ciconte lead the Light the Night Community Walk to honor their son slain teen Preston Lord along Gilbert Road in Gilbert earlier this month

Nick Lord, father of Preston Lord and stepmother Melissa Ciconte lead the Light the Night Community Walk to honor their son slain teen Preston Lord along Gilbert Road in Gilbert earlier this month

Members of the Gilbert community told DailyMail.com that Preston’s death was the culmination of months of group violence by the ‘Goons,’ who they say were allowed to continue their activities with impunity as their powerful parents protected them.

A lawsuit by the father of one of the Goon’s alleged victims names 17 alleged members of the teen gang and 26 parents of their parents.

The suit claims the alleged gang members and their parents worked to intimidate victims of the brutal assaults.

‘The conspiracy culminated in the murder of 16-year-old Preston Lord by certain members of the Goons,’ the lawsuit states, as reported by the Arizona Republic. 

‘Preston’s killers should have been in juvie,’ said lawyer Richard Lyons. ‘Why weren’t they arresting and charging these kids?’

Gilbert police have said Preston’s murder inspired them to take another look at the Gilbert Goons. 

The lawsuit accuses the Goons of causing skull fractures, facial fractures, broken and missing teeth, concussions and other serious injuries.

After the attacks, the teen delinquents allegedly ‘continued terrorizing their victims by texting threats of further violence and even death threats … contacting the victim’s family members, driving by their homes and knocking on their doors, according to Lyons.  

Members of the Gilbert community told DailyMail.com that Preston's death was the culmination of months of group violence by the 'Goons.' One of the assaults attributed to the group by police is pictured above

Members of the Gilbert community told DailyMail.com that Preston’s death was the culmination of months of group violence by the ‘Goons.’ One of the assaults attributed to the group by police is pictured above

Gilbert police chief Michael Soelberg becomes emotional delivering update in Gilbert Goons case on Jan. 25, 2024. He acknowledged in January that initially, law enforcement did not link the assaults occurring in the same locations and involving the same individuals

Gilbert police chief Michael Soelberg becomes emotional delivering update in Gilbert Goons case on Jan. 25, 2024. He acknowledged in January that initially, law enforcement did not link the assaults occurring in the same locations and involving the same individuals

When asked by arrests took so long despite the community pressure, the Queen Creek Police Department told DailyMail.com: ‘As we have said from the beginning, the focus has been on a conviction and not just an arrest. 

‘We have had a great deal of support from the community, but social media posts, discussion boards, rumors, third party statements, unrelated videos, is not direct evidence. All of these items have to be examined, processed, and corroborated.’

The Gilbert Police Department told DailyMail.com: ‘The Gilbert Police Department’s investigation into the ‘Gilbert Goons’ is active and additional information will be made available at the conclusion of the investigation.’

Brennen and Rogers are still working for justice for Preston, which they say includes accountability against anyone who tried to cover up the crime. They are waiting for Travis Renner, Talan’s father, to be charged for his alleged role trying to hide his son’s involvement.

The women have also decided to take their initiative national, as they have seen similar cases of teen violence across the nation. 

DailyMail.com reached out to Queen Creek Police regarding any upcoming charges against Travis Renner.