Police in Glynn County, Georgia are investigating a horrific instance of alleged torture which left a 19-year-old fighting for his life in a local hospital.
Astoundingly, local media in Brunswick, Georgia – the seat of coastal Glynn County – are using terms like “hazing” and “bullying” to describe what happened to 19-year-old Trent Lehrkamp at the hands of his abusers.
Based on the photos and videos circulating online, this is far worse than “hazing” or “bullying.”
As is the case in so many cases like this, perpetrators recorded videos and posted photos to social media as they allegedly lured their victim to a home, bound him with duct tape, spray painted him, (including his face and eyes) urinated on him, defecated on him, waterboarded him, poured liquor down his throat and forced him to ingest hallucinogenic mushrooms.
Others watched the torture – and did nothing to intervene on Lehrkamp’s behalf.
It is not immediately clear when the photos or videos circulating online were recorded. Police have said some of the videos were filmed during a previous incident – not the incident on Tuesday evening (March 21, 2023) which left Lehrkamp hospitalized.
Which begs the question: How many times was this young man tortured?
All we know for sure is the latest incident ended with Lehrkamp being deposited at the emergency room at Southeast Georgia medical center – unconscious and barely breathing. He remains hospitalized, but has recovered sufficiently to provide police with a statement about what happened to him.
The alleged perpetrators – several of whom mugged for social media posts as they participated in atrocities against the victim – are said to be students at Glynn Academy, a public school in Brunswick. Lehrkamp graduated from this school in May of 2022.
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“School officials have confirmed that some of the students are current students, but that the incident appears to have taken place at the home of a former student who dropped out,” local radio station WGIG 98.7 reported on Sunday.
“The Glynn County police department is currently conducting a criminal investigation regarding an incident that took place involving minors,” a statement issued Sunday morning by the county’s board of commissioners noted. “The story of this incident has been posted on social media channels within the community over the weekend.”
According to the statement, the agency’s criminal investigation division “is gathering facts, interviews, evidence, and other relevant information on this incident.”
The county’s statement was issued nearly five full days after police initially responded to the hospital in response to reports of an individual with a “high level of intoxication.” That hardly seems an encouraging response considering significant portions of this crime appear to have transpired on social media.
“To not compromise the current investigation, GCPD will keep the public up to date with information as allowed,” the statement continued.
As of Sunday, no arrests had been made in the case according to reporter Michael Hall of The Brunswick News.
Several of the individuals alleged to have participated in the abduction and torture of Lehrkamp hail from prominent local families, sources familiar with the situation told this news outlet. That has prompted many in the community to question the investigation – and the belated local coverage of it.
“This is why (it) took so long to come out,” one local parent told this news outlet. “They were going to try and sweep this under the rug.”
Shortly before 10:00 p.m. EST on Sunday evening, Glynn County police issued a second statement indicating they were continuing to investigate the incident – and that a search warrant had been issued on March 22 on a “residence on St. Simons Island, where the incident had occurred.”
“Numerous items of evidence where collected and recorded related to this investigation,” the release noted. “Supplemental search warrants were also served on Wednesday, March 22, to gather further evidence.”
The release further noted detectives had interviewed “several juveniles associated with the incident and are continuing to conduct additional interviews.” Police claimed the videos which “surfaced on social media are of a prior incident involving the victim and are not pertaining to this current incident.”
Lehrkamp was interviewed on Sunday at the hospital – “alert and conscious” – at which time police say he “gave a statement about what transpired on the evening of Tuesday, March 21.”
Stay tuned … this news outlet has submitted open records requests in connection with this story and plans to continue gathering information from our network of sources.
THE STATEMENT …
ABOUT THE AUTHOR …
Will Folks is the founding editor of the news outlet you are currently reading. Prior to founding FITSNews, he served as press secretary to the governor of South Carolina. He lives in the Midlands region of the state with his wife and seven children.
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