Teens plead not guilty to beating homeless man to death

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – The six teenagers accused of beating a homeless man to death, pleaded not guilty on Wednesday. Their bail was set at one million dollars each.

The homeless-man kept to himself, living under a Highway 52 bridge. Friends say he did not deserve to go out this way. He was just trying to help a buddy who was in trouble.

“We’d give him leftovers, clothes, a real nice guy. Never asked for anything. He’d give you the shirt off his back,” said Mike.

Those who knew Stephen Hissom are still in disbelief. The 55-year-old was beaten to death under a highway overpass in Santee on Saturday night.

Prosecutors say Hissom and his friend were biking, when a group of six teenagers got into an argument with his friend.

As the teens punched and kicked his friend, Stephen tried to help. The District Attorney office said the group then switched their violent attention to Hissom, and proceeded to beat him to death.

“All six defendants actively participated in punching and kicking both victims, including the deceased. We also believe two defendants were aggressors,” said Liz Rodriguez.

All six were charged with murder and assault. They all pleaded not guilty in court, and are being held on a million dollars bail each.

The six are friends, three sets of couples, according to their Facebook pages. According to the District Attorney, 19-year-old Danny Swan and Tyler Dare did most of the beating.

Dare, had just gotten out of the jail a month ago. 18-Year-old Sarah Baille was also charged, as was 18-year-old Cassidy Rowin, and 18-year-old Brian Kish.

Cheyenne Maloof who is 16-years-old is being charged as an adult.

The other man who was beaten up, and survived was able to identify all six of the teens.

One man who lives under a bridge says the homeless are being targeted.

“Three guys beat me with a skateboard. I got 19 stitches in my eye,” said Michael.

There is no word on a motive for the merciless beating that took a life.

Albert Cluff does not walk the path where the two homeless men were beaten at night anymore, and it has nothing to do with the homeless who set up camp in the area.

Each defendant faces 29 years, to life-in-prison for the charges of murder and assault.

Prosecutors say they all placed themselves at the scene of the crime.

Preliminary hearing in this case is set for December 16th.

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