October 21, 2014

Elyria
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Man dies from injuries sustained in alleged assault

Nicholas Masley

ELYRIA — A Wellington man’s death from injuries he sustained after an alleged beating is believed to be related to his girlfriend’s heroin addiction.

Jeffrey Brooks died early Saturday at MetroHealth Medical Center in Cleveland, according to Elyria police spokesman Capt. Chris Costantino.

Brooks, 25, of the 18000 block of Gifford Road, was hospitalized at EMH Elyria Medical Center on Thursday after he said he was “sucker punched,” according to Officer Gregg Drake’s report.

Brooks said he was leaving a home of a friend of his girlfriend at 183 Delaware Court in Elyria about 5 p.m. Thursday when he was punched several times in the face by Nick Masley.

Masley is the cousin of Kayla Ellis, Brooks’ girlfriend. Ellis told police that Masley punched Brooks because he believed Brooks got Ellis, 19, hooked on heroin.

“Mr. Brooks stated that it was a mutual decision between him and his girlfriend to use heroin at the same time,” Drake wrote in the report.

Brooks told police he was walking down the porch steps when he was punched and knocked unconscious.

Police said Brooks’ right eye was swollen and his nose was bleeding when they were called, and he complained of pain in his head. Brooks told police he had used heroin about 3 p.m. Thursday.

Brooks was transported from EMH to MetroHealth on Friday, but his condition worsened and he died at Metro, according to Jim Brooks, his uncle.

Masley was arrested Friday at his home in the 1800 block of Grafton Road.

Masley, 22, was charged with felonious assault and was being held without bond at the Lorain County Jail on Sunday night. He is due in Elyria Municipal Court today.

Costantino said that police are going to consult with the prosecutor’s office about additional charges against Masley.

Brooks was a car mechanic who raced cars at the Lorain County Speedway, his uncle said.

“I remember him bouncing around in a crib in his diaper,” said Brooks, 45. “I played Hot Wheels with this boy. We played in the sand.”

Brooks said his nephew, who he said had been dating Ellis since 2011, got addicted to heroin about a year ago. Brooks said the deck was stacked against his nephew.

He said addiction runs in the family, and that made it easier for Jeffrey Brooks to get hooked.

“It’s just so wrong in so many different ways,” Brooks said,

Contact Evan Goodenow at 329-7129 or egoodenow@chroniclet.com.


  • Arietta Sullivan

    sad sad world..R.I.P..you would think that people just would have more control after knowing with facts if it doesn’t kill you,in some way, that it’s a very harsh addiction.

    • Bob Sweatt

      Sad but true

    • banshee70

      But what’s even worse is it wasn’t the heroin that killed him, it was the injuries sustained from being punched in the head multiple times…

      • Jennifer Williams

        He was trying to get him and his girlfriend clean. I know this for a fact. I do not know what you guys think but it looks like the guy they arrested is NOT sober either. It is an illness my brother battled it for years. My brother has been clean for 5 years now. It can take a very long time.

        • Mandi Napier

          i no for a fact hun nick has never touched heroin in his life so time for you to learn some fact before you go judging

      • More to a story

        Your a medical professional that can come to that decision??? How bout we wait till the coroner decides the cause of death?

        • banshee70

          Considering he was complaining of pain from blunt force trauma to the head and his nose was bleeding, which is indicative of a brain injury, yeah….I’m sure that’s what caused his death. Also the fact he was in a hospital and they would have given him counteractive drugs if heroin were still in his system. Don’t ASS-ume you know anything about me. :)

          • More to a story

            Ok doc, you know head pain and bleeding are caused by conconsions. That doesn’t mean he died from it. Most people who are cuncussed have similar symptoms and are fine. How bout his heart stopped hrs later after he gained consciousness. Hmm…. Wonder what caused that? The heroin he took a few hrs before(not at 3pm)?? Funny how they got his heart going again and then he was brain dead. ( No oxygen to the brain for a extended period of time does that). I’m no doctor though unlike you. Haven’t assumed anything about you a side from ignorant statements.

          • banshee70

            *Concussions. No such word as cuncussed… Swelling of the brain after being punched and/or kicked in the head will also cause death. :)

          • Dave Sommers

            It’s a possibility but far from a fact as you seem to indicate. That doesn’t make you a bad person for assuming.

          • More to a story

            And just so you know, they didn’t give him anything to counteract it because he said the last time he used was at 3 pm, over nine hrs after the fact. When the truth was he had just used right before the incident.

          • banshee70

            They automatically do toxicology screens when someone is brought in, especially if they are a user.

  • im heartless, so be it

    its still killing em..

  • Tanisha Shreffler

    jeff was a good dude and this just makes him look like a bad person and he isn’t I know him for more then 10 years we grew up on the same street and went to school together and no matter what drug you choose to do it doesn’t matter he was still sweet and helping people and he was trying to get clean none of this should have happened no matter what. What if it was your family or friend would you want someone to assume something about your family or friend just shows life is short and we need all the time in the world with our family and friends that’s all and this sum bag needs to spend the rest of his life in jail for what he did to jeff it’s not right at all no matter what well jeff we love you and miss you hope you will protect all of us and hope to see you again someday soon R.I.P Jeff

  • disqus_egP224pCDk

    I’ll miss you Jeff. Thanks for all the years of keeping my family’s cars safe. Thanks for helping to fix the cars of the widows at my church. You were a good man.

  • Phil Blank

    Why show the killer’s photo alone, what about the man he killed?
    Showing only the killer’s photo almost seems like a pat on the back for killing the other guy!

  • Jennifer Williams

    This story is ridiculous! They made Jeff out to look like a horrible person.
    He was not a bad person got hooked on some bad stuff. That is not what killed him. The man who killed him was in the wrong. I do not care who you are or what your suspicion is you do not take matters in your own hands to severely hurt some one. He continued to punch him after he was knocked out. He deserves Aggravated murder on that count alone!

    • banshee70

      To be honest, this article did not give me a bad impression of Jeff. But then, maybe it’s because I’ve learned and researched addiction and know that ANYBODY can be an addict, addiction does not discriminate. I am utterly disgusted with the guy who did this to him. I don’t know any of the parties involved, but I am horrified at what this Masley guy did.

      • Guest

        Nick would never kill anyone intentionally hes my cousin I haven’t talked to him in years but I grew up with him

  • Dru Sexton

    Trying to get clean but he used at 3 pm?

    • Bob Sweatt

      Yeah you noticed that too. Funny isn’t it?

      • More to a story

        Actually, he used w Ellis while at the house party masley was at. Masley wanted to talk to them about getting help and not seeing each other for a while in order to accomplish it. Masley just lost his brother to heroin in May and he was very worried about his cousin. After seeing them useing he kicked them out and I don’t know what unfolded outside because there was only three people privy to the fight. Unfortunately, one of them is no longer w us. So before all you people start passing judgement on Nick, let ALL the facts come out. Your hearing Kayla’s story, a junkie that just got high w her boyfriend but the two of them were too ashamed to admit it at the hospital. Another lil known fact…dude went into cardiac arrest at the hospital….guess what caused thar? Not nick, the heroin. Heart stops long enough, not enough blood flow to the brain causes brain damage. Nick masley has never been into trouble his whole life. He smokes pot, that’s it. He don’t even drink. He was worried about his cousin and put himself in a stupid position for something tragic to happen, but he’s no “Scumbag”. I bet most of us can remember being 22 and thinking a whooping could fix a problem. Another thing, he didn’t “Beat him”, he hit him, the guy fell down and he hit him 2 more times. He’s 5’9 a buck 60. I’m sorry for all parties involved.

        • Bob Sweatt

          Dude you fail to realize. I could give a crap about anyone involved with this story.

          And whoever call being addicted to drugs an ILLNESS. You are wrong. An illness is something like CANCER or Autism. People use the word illness for drug addiction so you will feel sorry for them. Drug addiction is a choice. They weren’t ashamed to go to the treatment center. They just weren’t ready to get off the drugs.

          I say, “You made your bed. Now lie in it”

        • Jennifer Williams

          Oh he did not beat him right? That is why every bone around his eyes socket was shattered. A good old fashion whooping? Where did you grow up Harlem? If a guy is not conscious who keeps hitting him? And no they told the hospital that they had used. They were in talking with my family the day before looking for beds in rehabs to get help unfortunately there is a waiting list. His body was in distress hours after he used I am pretty sure the heroin didn’t cause the great trauma to his head. His brain was too swollen and he had a fever of 106. Even if he was using and so was Nick’s cousin who is NICK to take the matter into his own hands. Call the cops report drug abuse. Only GOD can judge us right? Unfortunately this girl has lost her boyfriend and her cousin and she needs help before she loses herself.

          • More to a story

            He hit him three times. First one knocked the guy down, then two more times. Every bone around his eye wasn’t shattered. He didn’t continue to hit him after he was knocked out. Please don’t make things up. Call the police huh? And what do they do? “My cousin and her boyfriend are doing heroin, do something about it” ok, that should work right. It’s funny, there’s a heroin epidemic in this county and family members are like, ” someone needs to do something about”. Most of them aren’t willing to fix that problem if it’s in there own house. They expect it to be done by someone else. Then those same people become Hippocrates and want to vilify someone when a “ACCIDENT” happens like this. How do you know that this guy didn’t become aggressive toward nick and he hit him in self defense? Because his heroin girlfriend who ran away with her cousin after it happened says so??(which is odd) There’s another side to the story. I get it though….people like to spout about what they don’t fully know

          • Jennifer Williams

            You seem to know a ton about this and from what side? Maybe you should testify on Nick’s behalf. Nothing will be known until the investigation is over. It is a very sad situation for all involved. Just pray for the families and get on with your life.

          • banshee70

            Maybe because he hit him after he was already down on the ground? That’s no accident if he’s already down and was hit again.

        • banshee70

          Why would he hit him when he was down? Heck, they don’t even allow that in boxing!

    • karenwilliamsfoley

      Until you can get into detox, to stop using will make you VERY sick and can kill you.

      • Brandy Lynn

        Just for the record, the ONLY thing that can kill you from detoxing is alcohol. Heroin will just make you sick, you will live.

  • karenwilliamsfoley

    Our family has known Jeff for quite a few years, he was a good kid who had a problem and wanted to get better. He was someone who would give the shirt off his back to someone who had less and he didn’t deserve what happened to him. I think this article did a disservice to his family and to his memory, maybe you could dig a little deeper and find out what Jeff did to help others. God rest his soul and God bless his family for having to cope with this terrible and senseless loss. RIP Jeff Brooks.

  • Macdaddyoh

    I dont think anyone should be sucker punched. Typically the one sucker punching is the one who knows he cannot win. I’ll bet Mr. Masley wishes he could take it back. Unfortunatley, this is another sad ending to the heroin problem in this county.

  • More to a story

    Actually, he used w Ellis while at the house party masley was at. Masley wanted to talk to them about getting help and not seeing each other for a while in order to accomplish it. Masley just lost his brother to heroin in May and he was very worried about his cousin. After seeing them useing he kicked them out and I don’t know what unfolded outside because there was only three people privy to the fight. Unfortunately, one of them is no longer w us. So before all you people start passing judgement on Nick, let ALL the facts come out. Your hearing Kayla’s story, a junkie that just got high w her boyfriend but the two of them were too ashamed to admit it at the hospital. Another lil known fact…dude went into cardiac arrest at the hospital….guess what caused thar? Not nick, the heroin. Heart stops long enough, not enough blood flow to the brain causes brain damage. Nick masley has never been into trouble his whole life. He smokes pot, that’s it. He don’t even drink. He was worried about his cousin and put himself in a stupid position for something tragic to happen, but he’s no “Scumbag”. I bet most of us can remember being 22 and thinking a whooping could fix a problem. Another thing, he didn’t “Beat him”, he hit him, the guy fell down and he hit him 2 more times. He’s 5’9 a buck 60. I’m sorry for all parties involved.

    • Dru Sexton

      For the Record I know none of the parties involved. However I will say this:

      I’m willing to bet the families if those who lost someone to drugs would drop a bullet in their loved one’s dealer without the slightest hesitation, if they knew it would have ultimately saved that person’s life down the road.

      With that being said, and not knowing the full circumstances how can anyone blame Mr. Masley for coming to what he thought was the defense of someone close to him?

      It’s never a good thing when someone loses their life, especially so young. The.only good outcome of this would be, if it doesn’t claim Masley’s life as well.

  • StacFB31

    I won’t pretend to know much about Jeff and I keep hearing he was a great guy and others say he was deserving of a brutal beating. I’m sure he was a mixture of both depending on your relationship with him. I know only a few things. He liked car racing and he was not only an addict but a dealer. He continually dealed drugs to my cousin. I feel for his family. I know how hard it is to watch someone you love harm themselves and how hopeless you feel. Their sons death makes one less drug dealer selling to my addicted relative. What will keep them up at night will make me rest easier. It’s one less person selling to him, buying us time to get him help. I’m sorry that never happened for them.

    • Christen Bartlebaugh Gunder

      you have some nerve!!!

  • Ashley

    Everyone talking about how great of a guy Jeff was, but that doesn’t mean nick isn’t. His intentions were never to kill Jeff. He was doing what anyone would do thinking he was protecting his family. Jeff obviously wasn’t too serious about getting help if he had used just a few hours before. And he being a user and a dealer god only knows what else he could of came across that would make his heart stop. No to mention the permanent damage the heroine probably already did. I’ve known nick and his family sense we were little kids living across from his brother and he’s definitely not “skum” or any other ridiculous name you people are calling him. Praying for both families , just a horrible situation all together.

  • Christian Gunder

    The amount of intolerance in these comments is actually kind of disgusting. The fact that it seems like some of you guys HAVE to be correct under this specific situation is obnoxious and ultimately pitiful. Based on this article alone, literally NO ONE knows what actually happened. But that’s not the point I want to address here.

    A person is dead– gone forever. When you’re getting enraged at either how this article is written, or at a person’s comment down below, just stop and think about that. A family has lost one of their own.

    There should be only two things happening based off of this article, especially in the comments section: “understanding” and “giving comfort” to the families of those involved in this awful circumstance.

    Drug addiction is an illness. If you have any kind of basic education, you should understand this. But I’m not here to fight those that are against this concept. I only want to bring to light the fact that northern Ohio seems to be a pool for drug abuse–especially heroin use. It’s a problem, and something needs to be done about it.

    Nothing good can come of drug abuse–specifically, heroin consumption. That’s something that we’ve seen, especially from this “news article”.

    However, in order to tackle the problem, we all must be ready to accept the amount of work it will take to research and understand drug abuse, and even manage/change our beliefs and understandings of how it works based on empirical evidence derived from said research.

    Please, everyone: take the time out of your day to look up scientific findings and research behind substance abuse… especially before making any decisions on how to look at (and hopefully tackle) this drug-related problem.

    There doesn’t have to be anymore hate, and there doesn’t have to be another death over this monstrosity of a drug if we all can just do our part to understand and, together, act.