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Man wanted in beach beating death turns himself in

Stop 26 is seen Long Beach Wednesday July 6 2011. | LisSchreiber~For Sun-Times Medi

Stop 26 is seen in Long Beach Wednesday, July 6, 2011. | Lisa Schreiber~For Sun-Times Media

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Updated: January 23, 2012 2:56AM

A Chicago man wanted in the beating death of a Beverly teenager turned himself in Thursday to authorities in Indiana.

James K. Malecek, 19, of Chicago, turned himself in to the LaPorte County Jail at 12:25 p.m. Thursday, said Robert Sulkowski, Long Beach Police chief marshal. He was booked, then released after posting $25,000 bond.

Malecek is charged with involuntary manslaughter, aggravated battery and battery in connection with the death of Kevin Kennelly, 17, of the 9900 block of South Damen Ave., Sulkowski said.

The fight took place Monday night on a Lake Michigan beach. Kennelly died in a Crown Point hospital on Wednesday.

An autopsy by the Lake County coroner Thursday determined that blunt force trauma to the head was the cause of death. The coroner has ruled the death a homicide.

Sulkowski said Kennelly was injured in a small fight, not a large brawl.

“It was a fight between two people. Somebody hit someone,” Sulkowski said.

He declined to say what sparked the fight.

“All these crazy stories we’re hearing are just that, crazy stories,” Sulkowski said.

Visitation for Kennelly will be from 4 to 8 p.m. Friday at the Mount Carmel Convocation Center, 6410 S. Dante Ave., Chicago.

Kennelly would have been a senior this fall at Mount Carmel High School.

A funeral Mass will begin at 10 a.m. Saturday at St. Barnabas Catholic Church, 10134 S. Longwood Drive, Chicago. Burial will be at Holy Sepulchre Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, the Kennelly family requests memorials in Kevin’s name to Mount Carmel High School.

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