Rowan student Donald Farrell’s death: Will one attacker turn on the others?
It's been eight years since 19-year-old Donnie Farrell III was brutally and fatally attacked during homecoming weekend activities at Rowan University.
And authorities are still holding out hope one of the people involved may turn himself and the others in.
"Maybe this is the year one of them makes the phone call that tells who struck the blow that killed Donald Farrell III," the Gloucester County Prosecutor's Office wrote in a press release about the the anniversary of Farrell's death.
Farrell died after he being punched and kicked by one or more assailants on campus Oct. 27, 2007.
The prosecutor's office noted that its own Lt. Langdon Sills told a class working on what it called "the Donnie Farrell Project" in 2011 that a break from one of the four or five males who approached Farrell near the Triad apartments isn't out of the question.
“With so many people involved, they may not stay friends forever,” Sills told the students, according to the prosecutor's office. The students researched and wrote articles about the Morris County sophomore lacrosse player’s life and death, it said.
The prosecutor's office said the killing was "believed to have been a random act and probably not about robbery." Farrell died the day after the assault from a ruptured artery in his neck.
It also quoted a retired homicide detective, James Gannon, telling the students that with multiple people involved, "time becomes your friend."
"The thing we have on our side is that relationships change,” Gannon said, according to the prosecutor's office. “Someone’s going to pick up the phone.”
Authorities say one of the muggers — named "Smoke," based on interviews authorities conducted — wore a distinctive red and gray Coogie hoody, a limited-production garment identified on security camera video from a nearby Glassboro convenience store.
Few were ever sold, and they were traced to North Jersey-New York retailers, the prosecutor's office said.
It also noted Rowan’s football opponent for the 2007 Homecoming game was Montclair State University, a North Jersey school — though it didn't go as far to say any individuals from Montclair were suspected.
The store video did not capture the person's face, which was obscured by a Yankees baseball cap, the prosecutor's office said.
A $100,000 reward remains available for information leading to the arrest and conviction of those responsible for Farrell's death.
Authorities are asking anyone with information about participants in the attack to call the Gloucester County Prosecutor’s Office at 856-384-5604 or the Rowan University Police Department at 856-256-4564. To leave an anonymous tip, text GLOTIP & your message to CRIMES (274637).