Houston, TX – The gunmen accused of murdering New Orleans Police Department Detective Everett Briscoe and his friend as they were vacationing in Houston in August were part of a 24-person robbery ring linked to at least three other homicides, according to police.
Det. Briscoe, 41, and his friend Dyrin Riculfy were enjoying a meal with friends on the outdoor patio of the Grotto Ristorante while on vacation in Houston on Aug. 21 when two hooded gunmen walked up to the group and demanded they had over their belongings, WVUE reported.
The group complied with their orders, but one of the suspects opened fire anyway, killing Det. Briscoe.
Riculfy, who was shot in the head, later succumbed to his wounds at a local hospital, WVUE reported.
The gunmen fled the scene without stealing any of the victims’ belongings, witness Elroy James told WVUE.
They were later identified as known gang members Frederick Dewayne Jackson, 19, and Anthony Rayshard Jenkins, 21, according to KPRC.
Prosecutors said Jenkins and Jackson were both out on bond for other offenses at the time of the deadly attack.
A third suspect, 19-year-old Khalil Nelson, was also later apprehended in connection with the shooting, KVUE.
They all face capital murder charges.
Houston Police Chief Troy Finner announced on Monday that the alleged gunmen are three of at least 24 suspects investigators have linked to an organized robbery ring comprised primarily of violent Houston street gang members, WVUE reported.
Chief Finner said the gang members operated in day and night shifts and targeted people near high-end stores or in in affluent areas of the city.
They often used stolen guns to carry out the attacks, and sometimes followed victims home to rob them inside their residences, the chief said.
“We do think these dangerous – very dangerous – crews are responsible for a League City homicide and also our Grotto’s incident, where a (New Orleans) detective and another gentleman was murdered,” Chief Finner confirmed, according to KVUE.
Among the evidence seized in the investigation were 24 firearms that had been stolen from a Houston pawn shop, KVUE reported.
According to Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg, seven of the 24 suspects were out on bond as they were committing more violent offenses.
Some face both state and federal charges, KVUE reported.
“They are given repeated bail by judges and that lack of accountability undermines the system,” Ogg told reporters.
Two of the suspects linked to the robbery ring remain on the loose, KTRK reported.
They have been identified as Jontrail Myles, who is wanted for conspiracy to commit aggravated robbery, and Jeremi Haynes, who has been charged with capital murder.
Additional arrests could be forthcoming, according to police.
Investigators said the group is responsible for stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars in property in addition to the five homicides, KTRK reported.