Police make two arrests following Westfield homicide

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Joseph Coccaro IV (left) and Shakka Brogdon (right)

UPDATE (Feb. 22, 2018) — Joseph Coccaro pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter and aggravated battery. He was sentenced to nine years in the Indiana Department of Correction, with 585 days of jail credit.

UPDATE (Jan. 12, 2018) — Shakka Brogdon was found not guilty of involuntary manslaughter. However, a jury returned guilty verdicts on two counts of aggravated battery. Sentencing is scheduled for March 22, 2018.

WESTFIELD, Ind. — Two men are now behind bars for the brutal beating and death of a Westfield man.

Joseph Coccaro IV, 22, Westfield and Shakka Brogdon, 22, Indianapolis face a number of charges including involuntary manslaughter.

Police say the victim, Cory Zimmer, was not a random target.  And now his family is saying this was all over a little bit of marijuana.

Zimmer, 24, was found lying in a parking lot Wednesday afternoon.  His face was bloodied and swollen.

“I tried to talk to him. I said, Buddy are you okay?  But his teeth were all knocked out and blood was really bad,” witness Jane Flanders said.

Police haven’t commented on what motivated the beating, but friends and family say it was drug related.

FOX59 spoke with Zimmer’s mother, Rhonda Zimmer, who says her son struggled with mental illness and drug addiction.   She also says he had a kind heart.

“He would never harm anyone,” Zimmer said.

Another friend tells FOX59 Cory came to his defense after one of the suspects attacked him.

The case has been handed over to the Hamilton County Prosecutor’s Office. In addition to involuntary manslaughter and aggravated battery charges both men face, Coccaro is preliminary charged with intimidation and dealing marijuana.