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Three New Mexico teens charged with killing homeless men

By Alan Duke, CNN
updated 7:31 AM EDT, Tue July 22, 2014
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Teen says the trio "randomly" attacked Albuquerque homeless over the past year
  • 16-year-old says he'"saw the devil" after the fatal attack, murder complaint says
  • 15-year-old tells police he was "very angry" about break up with girlfriend, investigator says
  • 18-year-old says others used "bricks, sticks and a metal fence pole" while he was the lookout

(CNN) -- Three teens admitted to police they attacked two homeless men who were found dead in Albuquerque, New Mexico, on Saturday, police said.

The boys -- 15, 16 and 18 -- used bricks and a metal pole to kill the men, according to a criminal complaint accusing each of them of two counts of murder.

A judge set bond at $5 million each during a hearing Monday. All three are being prosecuted as adults, although the two youngest are being held in a youth detention center.

The 15-year-old told an investigator that the trio "randomly" attacked homeless people throughout Albuquerque over past year, including more than 50 people since moving to the neighborhood several months ago, the complaint said.

The bodies of two men were found on mattresses in a field across a street from the home where two of the boys lived, according to the complaint. A third man told police he managed to escape the late night attack and he recognized the teens despite the T-shirts covering their heads.

The youngest boy said he "was very angry over breaking up with his long-time girlfriend" when he went with the older boys to "mob" the men, an investigator said in a sworn statement. The boy explained that " 'mob' meant they were going to attack them and rob them," the detective said.

He told police that they used "several cinder blocks, a metal pole and some sticks" in the hourlong attack, the detective said. The 15-year-old "admitted to using the cinder block as a weapon over 10 times," he said.

The 15-year-old said his brother, 16, "scooped up some dirt from the ground and placed on the deceased males' faces and stated 'eat mud bitch,' " the complaint said.

The 16-year-old told a detective that "afterwards he looked at himself in the mirror and 'saw the devil,'" according to the complaint.

The oldest teen distanced himself from the most brutal details of the attack, accusing the other boys of using "bricks, sticks and a metal fence pole" to hit the men while he "acted as a lookout," the complaint said.

The 18-year-old did admit "to pushing down one of the subjects and picking up a stick near where the deceased subjects were located," it said.

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CNN's Janet DiGiacomo and Amanda Watts contributed to this report.

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