ARIZONA NEWS

18-year-old suspect implicated in 2nd East Valley assault, this time in Mesa

Jan 17, 2024, 11:31 AM | Updated: Mar 12, 2024, 9:46 am

Mugshot of Christoper Fantastic, a suspect in two East Valley assault cases, along with a file imag...

Christoper Fantastic was indicted for an August assault. (Mesa Police Department Photos)

(Mesa Police Department Photos)

PHOENIX – A young man who was arrested last week in connection with an assault in Gilbert is also facing charges for an attack in Mesa, authorities said Wednesday.

Christopher Fantastic, 18, who is already behind bars, has been implicated in an assault from May 29, 2023, the Mesa Police Department said.

Officers responded to a fight involving 30-40 youths in the area of Val Vista Drive and Pueblo Avenue, between Broadway Road and Southern Avenue, police said. People scattered and nobody was arrested at the time.

But on Jan. 4, after news of multiple violent East Valley attacks attributed to a gang known as the Gilbert Goons came to light, a man reported to police that his stepson had been assaulted during the brawl.

Investigators used witness accounts and video evidence to connect a 17-year-old and Fantastic to the attack.

The minor, whose name was not released because of his age, was taken into custody last Thursday.

What are the charges against Christopher Fantastic in Mesa and Gilbert?

Fantastic was booked for aggravated assault on Tuesday, according to Mesa Police. He already was in custody for his alleged role in an Aug. 18, 2023, assault outside a Gilbert In-N-Out Burger.

Fantastic is one of five people, including two minors, facing charges in the Gilbert attack. He was booked last week on one count each of assault with intent to injure and aggravated robbery.

During Fantastic’s initial court appearance in the Gilbert case last Wednesday, a prosecutor implied he was part of a group involved in multiple attacks without specifically mentioning the Gilbert Goons.

Where does the investigation into Preston Lord’s death stand?

Media reports and social media accounts have linked the Goons to last year’s fatal assault on Queen Creek high school student Preston Lord. Lord, 16, was attacked outside a Halloween party on Oct. 28 and died of his injuries in a hospital two days later.

The Queen Creek Police Department submitted charges to the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office against seven suspects in the Lord case on Dec. 28, 2023, but no arrests have been made.

Maricopa County Attorney Rachel Mitchell has indicated that sorting through the submission — which included an 1,800-page report and about 2,000 pieces of evidence, including 600 videos – will be a lengthy process.

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18-year-old suspect implicated in 2nd East Valley assault, this time in Mesa