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DC Grand Jury Indicts Man On Hate Crime Charges For Targeted Attacks On Homeless Victims

Washington, DC – A DC grand jury indicted the man accused of multiple attacks earlier this year on sleeping homeless men in the nation’s capital on hate-crime charges on Wednesday.

Prosecutors said 30-year-old Gerald Brevard III attacked three homeless men in DC on March 3, March 8, and March 9, The Washington Post reported.

Two of the men were shot but survived their wounds, WPIX reported.

Officials said the third victim – 54-year-old Morgan Holmes – was shot and stabbed to death before Brevard set the homeless man’s tent on fire and left him to burn, WTOP reported.

Brevard is accused of leaving DC after those attacks and shooting two men in New York City on March 12, killing one.

Both cities released pictures of the man they believed to be the suspect in all of the attacks, which they said had multiple similarities.

The man later identified as Brevard was wearing a hood and mask in the New York City images, but his face was visible in the surveillance video captured in DC, NBC News reported.

He returned home to DC and was captured on March 15 by agents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) after he was spotted walking along Pennsylvania Avenues, SE.

Brevard was charged with first-degree murder while armed, assault with intent to kill while armed, aggravated assault while armed, mayhem while armed, in addition to multiple firearm offenses in DC.

He’s facing additional murder and attempted murder charges in New York City.

It’s alleged that Brevard committed bias-related hates crimes because he targeted homeless people in his attacks, The Washington Post reported.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia said in a statement that Brevard is facing a maximum of life in prison without the possibility of parole on the murder charge, if the jury finds there were aggravating circumstances.

He is scheduled for arraignment on Oct. 18 before Judge Robert Okun in D.C. Superior Court, The Washington Post reported.

Investigators have not determined why Brevard went to New York City to continue his attacks and said he appeared to have no connections to the area.

Family members told police that Brevard was himself homeless at the time he committed the crimes, The Washington Post reported.

His family said he suffered from severe mental illness.

Court records showed the Brevard is a career criminal who pleaded guilty to assault with a deadly weapon in 2019, WTOP reported.

A 2019 evaluation of Brevard from the DC Department of Behavioral Health initially determined he was psychotic and unfit to stand trial, the Daily Mail reported.

Prison staff said he “demonstrated bizarre behaviors” and a doctor noted in a 2019 report that Brevard had “lodged paperwork in his buttocks” that was found during a search at the courthouse.

The doctor said Brevard told her “It was my rap songs… I did not want anyone to steal them,” the Daily Mail reported.

A judge found Brevard competent to stand trial a month later, but he was released after making a plea deal with prosecutors.

Court records showed Brevard was arrested again in 2020 in Fairfax County, Virginia and charged with burglary and abduction in connection with the assault of a woman at a hotel, WTOP reported.

Brevard ended up pleading guilty to a reduced charge in that case.

Written by
Sandy Malone

Managing Editor - Twitter/@SandyMalone_ - Prior to joining The Police Tribune, Sandy wrote the Politics.Net column for the Wall Street Journal and was managing editor of Campaigns & Elections magazine. More recently, she was an internationally-syndicated columnist for Conde Nast (BRIDES), The Huffington Post, and Monsters and Critics. Sandy is married to a retired police captain and former SWAT commander.

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Written by Sandy Malone


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