Talan Renner: High school football player accused of beating another teen at party brags of being 'too strong'

Talan Renner: High school football player accused of beating another teen at party brags of being 'too strong'
Preston Lord died of head injuries (KGNS News video screengrab)

Warning: This article contains a recollection of crime and can be triggering to some, readers’ discretion advised.

QUEEN CREEK, ARIZONA: The high school football player who is suspected of killing another adolescent at an Arizona Halloween party boasted about the vicious beating, gloating, "I guess I'm just too strong," according to the police.

Talan Renner, aged 17, faces charges of first-degree murder and kidnapping in relation to the assault that occurred on October 28, targeting 16-year-old Preston Lord in Queen Creek, situated about 40 minutes east of Phoenix.

Talan Renner unintentionally 'killed' Preston Lord

Preston Lord died from his wounds two days later. Seven people are charged in connection with the deadly incident, including Renner.

Renner told a friend on the internet that he unintentionally "killed" Lord during a fight at the party, claiming he didn't know his strength, according to a police report obtained by KTVK.

“I got in a fight, a big group fight and I accidentally killed a kid,” Renner wrote in a Snapchat message, police said. “I guess I’m just too strong,” the message further read.

As he hurriedly left the celebration with three other suspects—Taylor Sherman, 19, Jacob Meisner, 17, and Dominic Turner, 20—police said Renner also admitted to the attack.

Suspects on Preston Lord's murder (AZ family video screengrab)
Suspects on Preston Lord's murder (AZ family video screengrab)

“I might have hospitalized that kid. I hit him pretty hard,” Renner told Sherman as they left, according to police.

At the massive Halloween party, which was attended by an estimated 250 teens and had up to 30 cars parked outside, police were called to a chaotic scene.

“Someone’s going to get hurt, someone’s going to get killed. These kids have weapons on them,” one witness told police. 

A second caller witnessed some chaos. “We’ve got kids running with beer bottles,” the witness told police. “They’re hitting each other. We just saw two car accidents. I think they’re two drunks.”

According to a witness, Lord was attacked by up to fifteen suspects donning ski masks. At a hospital on October 30, the teenager passed away from his severe injuries.

Investigators think that a fight over a gold chain set off the fatal altercation. Police claimed that Turner, also referred to as "D Money," had taken the chain from one of Lord's friends.

Renner, who is still being held on a $1 million bond, hit the victim several times before other guests joined in.

“Talan said he hammer-pounded Preston in the face four times and everyone surrounded him and started kicking him,” a friend of Renner’s family told cops.

The injured teen was then reportedly climbed upon by an unidentified individual who proceeded to "dance" on him. “When the male was on the ground, the group of kids began recording and ‘humping’ the individual on the ground before they all ran away,” another witness told authorities.

Treston Billey charged with first-degree murder and kidnapping

Treston Billey, an 18-year-old suspect in Lord's death, has been charged with first-degree murder and kidnapping. All of the alleged attackers have entered not-guilty pleas and have been ordered to be detained on a $1 million bond.

“This is a culmination of an extensive investigation and a critical step in getting justice for Preston,” Queen Creek Police Chief Randy Brice told reporters earlier this month. “To Preston’s family, we thank you for your patience and faith in our efforts. We cannot imagine what you have endured.”

According to police, several partygoers saw Billey stomping on Lord's head while he was already on the ground. Authorities said that Talyn Vigil, a 17-year-old suspect in the fatal beating, later admitted on Snapchat to attacking Lord.

“I hit a kid and this kid hit his head,” Vigil wrote to a friend, according to a police report. “And then they kicked his head in the ground and then I got word he died so idk.”

William Owen Hines, 18, is accused of implicating himself in the altercation. He is charged with murder in connection with the house party attack, according to the New York Post.

Hines told police, "Straight up bro, I was drunk, heat of the moment. I kicked him one time and I kicked his leg … More like one, two or three kicks and then started to back off."

Renner, who was charged in early March, resumed playing football for American Leadership Academy-Gilbert North, his high school, on November 17, a few weeks after the attack. He was identified as one of the participants in the game. 

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