OKLAHOMA CITY (REUTERS) - Three teenage boys were charged in the killing of an Australian university student in Oklahoma "for the fun of it," prosecutors said on Tuesday Christopher Lane, of Melbourne, was found dead of a gunshot wound on Friday, according to police in Duncan, Oklahoma, about 130km south of Oklahoma City.
Charged with first-degree murder are Chancey Allen Luna, 16, and James Francis Edwards Jr, 15. Michael Dewayne Jones, 17, who allegedly drove the vehicle carrying the other suspects, was charged with use of a vehicle in the discharge of a weapon and accessory to murder after the fact, according to the Stephens County District Attorney's office.
Police said Jones named Luna as the gunman.
Lane was out jogging during a visit to his girlfriend and her family in Duncan on Friday, when he was shot in the back, police said. He attended East Central University in Ada, Oklahoma, where he was on a baseball scholarship.
According to police, Jones admitted that the teens decided to kill someone "for the fun of it." Police said a witness called 911 when she saw Lane stagger across the road and fall.
According to police, Jones told police on Sunday that they saw Lane jogging and decided he would be their target. Police said the three followed him in their vehicle and shot Lane in the back, police said.
Police used surveillance video from area businesses to identify the vehicle, which was found later at a church parking lot with the three suspects inside after a caller reported three youths with guns who were threatening to kill someone.
The vehicle's trunk contained a shotgun with the serial numbers sanded off, but the actual weapon used in the shooting has not been found, police said.
Lane's father, Mr Peter Lane, called the killing "senseless" in an interview broadcast on CNN from Australia.
"There's not going to be any good coming out of this because it was so senseless," Mr Lane said. "It happened, it's wrong and we're just trying to deal with it the best we can." Lane had started as a catcher for the ECU Tigers.
In a statement, ECU baseball coach Dino Rosato said Lane was a well-respected teammate.
"He was an absolute joy to coach," said Mr Rosato. "He set a great example for all of his teammates, but more importantly for the younger players. He was a mature student-athlete who his teammates could look to for advice and support."