Playground beating victim’s condition ‘unchanged’

Scott Simerson (Undated courtesy photo)

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — The man critically injured in a violent attack on a northwest Grand Rapids elementary school playground remains in critical condition as one of the teen boys accused in the beating is still at large.

The May 23 attack left Scott Simerson, 24, in critical condition with swelling on his brain, his family told 24 Hour News 8 in late May.

Monday, Grand Rapids police said Simerson’s condition was “unchanged” and the search for a 15-year-old boy they say was involved in the attack continued.

As part of their investigation, police are reviewing surveillance video from the area as well as cell phone video that was taken around the time of the attack.

On May 27, two boys, ages 15 and 16, were charged with assault with intent to do great body harm less than murder. They are being held on $50,000 bonds and are scheduled for further hearings in juvenile court in the next few weeks.

Grand Rapids police officials said they had made contact with the father of the suspect who remained on the run but have not been able to locate the boy.

Police said Simerson, a father, was babysitting children who were playing outside of Sibley Elementary School when the suspects began bothering the children. After Simerson confronted the group, they later jumped him when he wasn’t looking, police said.

The mother of the 15-year-old who is in custody said her son claims he was hit in the head with a stray basketball as he walked by the school. He confronted Simerson and punched him after he laughed the incident off. He says the other alleged attackers who he didn’t know then jumped in and began violently stomping Simerson, the mother said.

Grand Rapids police continue their investigation. Anyone with information is asked to call police at 616.456.3403 or Silent Observer at 616.774.2345.

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