Police have arrested one man and are in pursuit of another in the alleged beating and murder of an 88-year-old World War II veteran named Delbert Belton in a Spokane parking lot. Police found the victim passed out in his car on Wednesday evening. The man died from head injuries obtained during the beating the next day.
The two alleged attackers are currently unknown, but security cam footage from the scene indicates the two at teenage black males. This fact would not be important if not for the recent alleged murder of Christopher Lane in Oklahoma. Besides the black-on-white crime element to the stories, the two acts appear unrelated.
Details of the case are still unknown, but it appears the beating was a random occurrence. Spokane Police noted in a public address that, “"It does appear random. He was in the parking lot, it appears he was assaulted in the parking lot and there was no indication that he would have known these people prior to the assault." Police also noted that the suspects apparently used flashlights as weapons in their assault on the elderly man.
The randomness and savagness of the murder has sent shockwaves around the normally quiet Spokane area. Many of Belton’s friends and family have spoken positively of his life and legacy.
As noted, one of the two suspects has been captured, and one is still on the run. Hopefully police will be able to bring these two to justice for their heinous assault.
The Spokane Police Department is asking anyone with information to call their hotline at 456-2233.