Eight suspected Duarte gang members were arrested in connection with three homicides and two attempted homicides that occurred during a two-month period in Pasadena as a result of what authorities believe was a gang feud, authorities announced Tuesday.
The crimes occurred between December 2016 and January of this year, Pasadena Police Chief Phillip L. Sanchez said.
“This case underscores the dedication, talents and investigative experience of our Homicide Unit, which was supported by forensic specialists, patrol officers and other law enforcement partners, including the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department,” the police chief said.
“I cannot emphasize enough just how difficult this particular case was and how proud I am of the work this team accomplished in apprehending the suspects responsible for the shootings,” Sanchez said.
Detectives learned there was “an active feud between Pasadena and Duarte street gangs, which likely was the basis for the shootings,” Sanchez said. “The preliminary evidence suggested a Duarte street gang may have been responsible for the murders and attempted murders in our community.”
Seven suspects were booked on suspicion of conspiracy to commit murder and other offenses: Anthony Edwards, 25; Marquis Turner, 28, Isaiah Daniels, 24; Pernell Barnes, 20; Charod Robinson, 28; Derion Lee, 34; and Andrew Vasquez, 27. An eighth man, John Robinson, 47, was booked on suspicion of being an accessory after the fact.
Daniels, Barnes, Charod Robinson, Lee and Vasquez allegedly were involved in the Jan. 6 killings of Antoine Sutphen and Ormoni Duncan and the attempted murder of a woman in the 100 block of West Claremont Street. Police said the victims were fired upon while they were gathered for a vigil in memory of Brandon Douglas, who was killed on Dec. 22, 2016, in the 1200 block of North Fair Oaks Avenue.
Lee is also suspected in Douglas’ killing, which is believed to be the first stemming from the alleged gang feud.
Lee is charged with three counts of murder, while Daniels, Barnes and Vasquez are each charged with two counts of murder. They are also facing one count each of attempted murder, conspiracy to commit a crime and shooting at an inhabited dwelling.
The murder charges include the special circumstance allegations of multiple murders and murder by discharge of a firearm from a vehicle, along with gang allegations. Prosecutors will decide later whether to seek the death penalty against them.
John Robinson is charged with being an accessory after the fact with knowledge of the crime.
Lee, Barnes, Vasquez and John Robinson are due back in a Pasadena courtroom Aug. 4, when a date is scheduled to be set to determine if there is enough evidence to require them to stand trial. Daniels and Charod Robinson were arrested outside California and are awaiting extradition, according to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.
Edwards and Turner, meanwhile, are suspected in the Jan. 16 shooting of a woman police described as an innocent bystander who survived. Edwards and Turner are charged with one count each of attempted murder and conspiracy to commit a crime. They are due back in a Pasadena courtroom June 20.
“The ongoing investigation suggests these suspects could also be responsible for many violent crimes, both reported and unreported,” Sanchez said.
Police released booking photos of the suspects, and urged anyone with information on the case to call detectives at (626) 744-4241 or (626) 744-4511; or Crime Stoppers at (800) 222-TIPS.
–City News Service