Investigation by Central Precinct detectives into the June 22 punching and kicking death of homeless man Nicolas Christian, 30, near 2nd Avenue North and Commerce Street downtown has led to the indictment of three Murfreesboro men on charges of 2nd degree murder and aggravated assault.
Briston Reed, Christopher Lawless, and Austin Peralta, all age 20, surrendered themselves at the Metro Jail and are being held in lieu of $150,000 bond each.
The investigation shows that the three friends came to downtown Nashville on the night of June 21 to participate in the nightlife. During the early morning hours of June 22, they became involved in a verbal argument with Christian on 2nd Avenue North, which escalated into a fist fight before the parties were separated and went their own ways. A short time later, they encountered Christian again outside 211 Commerce Street where more words were exchanged. The three are alleged to have been the aggressors in the punching and kicking of Christian, who was rendered unconscious. Christian was transported to Vanderbilt University Medical Center where he died from head trauma. Detectives used footage from downtown surveillance cameras to assist in identifying the three defendants, who were interviewed in late June.
The case was staffed with the District Attorney’s Office after the interviews and completion of the medical examiner’s autopsy report.