Three 16-year-old Alabama ten girls have been charged as adults in the death of another teen who was reported missing on June 24, the Montgomery Advertiser reported.
Ta’Niya Merriweather, Erin Taylor and Tyeshia Whisenant were charged with capital murder on Tuesday, Montgomery police Capt. Saba Coleman said.
Lesley Luna Pantaleon, 17, was found dead on July 4 near Old Salem Road in the Catoma Creek area southwest of Montgomery, police said.
According to the charges filed against the three girls, Pantaleon was beaten with a metal pole and stabbed to death near where her body was found, the Advertiser said. A tip led police to her body.
Pantaleon’s family said they last saw the girl on June 24 when she left home driving a 2006 Blue Chevrolet Trailblazer. Crimestoppers put out an alert about her five days later, but police say she was already dead, killed on the day she went missing.
Coleman told WBRC that the investigation revealed that Pantaleon was involved in a fight with the other girls and was killed late in the afternoon on that day. Her vehicle and cell phone were taken after her death.
The charging documents do not reveal what led to the fight or a motive for the killing. Merriweather, Taylor, and Whisenant are being held without bond.
For the latest true crime and justice news, subscribe to the ‘Crime Stories with Nancy Grace’ podcast:
[Featured image: Lesley Luna Pantaleon/Crimestoppers]