Police: La Salle student death a tragedy

Students allegedly attempted to buy marijuana

CINCINNATI - Police are characterizing the shooting death of a La Salle High School senior as "tragic."

"Everybody in this room has done something stupid," Cincinnati Assistant Police Chief Paul Humphries said, addressing questions during a Tuesday press conference. "Most of us make it through life and we don't pay the ultimate price for the one or two things we've done. Unfortunately in this situation it didn't work out that way."

On Monday, Cincinnati police arrested Dierres Lee, 19, for the murder of Justin Brown, 17. He remains behind bars on a $1 million bond.

Police say Brown, along with three other La Salle students, reportedly attempted to buy marijuana from Lee in the 1700 block of Carll Street on the West Side Sunday night.

Lee shot at the four high school students' vehicle after they gave Lee fake money and tried to drive away from the scene with the marijuana. Brown was struck in the head while in the passenger seat, according to police.

"This isn't the violence that you see on TV," Humphries said. "This is nothing like that."

Humphries said he coached Brown in sports throughout the years and described the teenager as an honor roll student and "great kid from a great family."

The other students in the car with Brown drove him to Good Samaritan Hospital Sunday night. Brown was later transferred to the University of Cincinnati Medical Center where he died, police said.

Police say the investigation does not indicate any charges would be filed against the other students involved in the incident.

"It's a tragedy and an unfortunate lesson, and there are some take-aways from this," Cincinnati Police Chief James Craig said.

Craig added he hoped this prompted further discussion in teaching teenagers to make better decisions.

On Monday, La Salle High School posted the following message on the school's website:

"As we always do within the La Salle Community, please keep Justin and the Brown family in your thoughts and prayers as they proceed through this very difficult time," La Salle's administration posted.

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