17-year-old found dead outside LeBron James’ I Promise School


Ethan Liming was beaten to death outside the I Promise School, a school founded by LeBron James in Akron, Ohio police say.

Firestone High School PTSA

A 17-year-old boy was found dead in the parking lot of LeBron James’ I Promise School after a fight, Ohio police say.

The teenager, Ethan Liming, died of blunt force trauma to the head, Gary Guenther, chief investigator at the Summit County Medical Examiner’s Office, told McClatchy News. Liming was a student at Firestone Community Learning Center, a public high school in Akron, Ohio, Akron police Lt. Michael Miller told McClatchy. Akron is about 40 miles south of Cleveland.

None of the people involved in the June 2 incident are believed to be students at the I Promise School, Miller said.

Liming was a junior in high school and a baseball player, Facebook posts say. A vigil was organized at the Firestone school baseball field for the night of June 3.

I Promise School is a school for kindergarten through eighth grade students funded by the LeBron James Family Foundation and focused on students who are struggling academically. James is an NBA player for the Los Angeles Lakers.

At around 10:45 p.m., Liming and at least three friends went to the parking lot of the school, where they got into a fight with another group of people, Miller said. At least three males were already at the school on the playground or playing basketball, he said.

At some point during the fight, Liming was knocked to the ground and people continued to attack him, he said.

“Those combined injuries contributed to his death,” he said.

Police are still trying to identify the suspects, he said.

James tweeted about the killing on June 3.

“Our condolences goes out to the family who lost a loved one!!” James wrote. “My (sic) the heavens above watch over you during this tragedy! Pray for our community!”

His foundation also posted a message to its Twitter account.

“Our community is everything to us,” the foundation wrote. “We were devastated to learn of the overnight incident that saw a life lost near our school. We are grieving with our community over another senseless act of violence.”

Madeleine List is a McClatchy National Real-Time reporter. She has reported for the Cape Cod Times and the Providence Journal.

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