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911 tapes reveal agonizing moments after Deerfield teen set on fire
The Broward Sheriff's Office this morning released terrifying recordings of 911 calls it received from people reporting the burning of Deerfield Beach teenager Michael Brewer earlier this week.
Brewer, 15, can be heard howling in agony Monday afternoon as a woman tries to tell the emergency dispatcher and paramedics where the attack took place.
"And his skin is peeling off," she tells the dispatcher.
"Please help meeee!" the boy yells.
"You're going to be OK, sweetheart," the woman tells the shrieking Brewer.
"Get it off me!" he yells at another point.
The woman is heard telling paramedics that Brewer jumped in the pool of the Lime Tree Village apartments to put out the flames. The woman then asks Brewer how he caught on fire.
"I don't know," he yells at first. "Somebody poured stuff on me. I don't know what happened."
Brewer is listed in critical condition at the Jackson Memorial Hospital Burn Center.
Five boys have been charged in the attack that has made national headlines.
The youngest suspect will undergo psychiatric testing to determine his competency, a Broward judge ruled today.
The evaluation will be performed by Dr. Michael Brannon, the same psychologist who examined Lionel Tate, who in 1999 at age 12 was accused of murdering a playmate. Tate was tried and convicted as an adult.
Jeremy Jarvis, 13, is charged with aggravated assault. Prosecutors say Jarvis and the other boys surrounded Brewer outside a Deerfield Beach apartment complex.
Jarvis' 15-year-old brother, Denver, is accused of pouring alcohol on Brewer, while Jesus Mendez, 15, faces an attempted murder charge for allegedly lighting the fire, injuring himself in the process.
The Sheriff's Office said the attack on Brewer came after Matthew Bent, 15, tried to steal a bicycle belonging to Brewer's father because Brewer didn't repay $40 he had borrowed to buy a video game.
Brewer called 911 when he saw Bent try to steal the bike. That got him labeled a snitch, the word used to taunt Brewer during the attack.
Rafael Olmeda can be reached at rolmeda@SunSentinel.com or 954-356-4694.