On Tuesday, police announced the arrest and arraignment of a third person of interest in the drug-related murders of two men in Manhattan the night before.
Police say 35-year-old Jayqwan Hamilton was escorted out of the 7th precinct on the Lower East Side on Monday without saying a word, despite the fact that he allegedly has an extensive criminal history.
He is suspected of being involved in at least 17 narcotics and robbery instances between September 2021 and August 2022, according to the police.
On Tuesday, the indictments of 30-year-old Shane Hoskins, 27-year-old Robert Demaio, 29-year-old Jacob Barroso, and 27-year-olds Andre Butts and Shane Hoskins for robbing people of their phones and credit cards outside bars were made public.
Hamilton, Demaio, and Barroso are all charged with murder in addition to robbery, conspiracy, and identity theft.
Two of the drugged victims, John Umberger and Julio Ramirez, had their deaths deemed murders in early March.
Both males had been out at gay clubs in Hell’s Kitchen the night before they were attacked. Drugs containing fentanyl were administered to them.
Linda Clary, Umberger’s mother, was relentless in her efforts to bring awareness to her son’s suffering. He was 34 years old at the time of his disappearance in 2022, and he worked as a political consultant. He was discovered overdosed in an unknown residential complex.
His finances and vitality were depleted.
On Tuesday, Clary stated she has forgiven those responsible for her son’s death.
What Clary meant for evil, God meant for good, and good is coming out of this. “May God just have pity on your soul and I hope that one day you know the loving grace that is found in Jesus Christ just like I do.”
Similar circumstances led to the death of 25-year-old Julio Ramirez, who was discovered unresponsive in a taxi. After spending the night at another homosexual bar, he returned home to find his bank accounts empty.
Members of the gay community protested for months afterward. However, police quickly realized that this was part of a bigger criminal trend affecting establishments of all types throughout the city.
According to NYPD Chief James Essig, “They target their victims leaving bars, offering drugs in some cases, then either through force or when the victim passes out, they remove jewelry, money, watches, and phones.”
According to the investigation conducted by the police, Ramirez and Umberger were only two of 17 victims of the gang.
Demaio and Barroso, two further suspects, were apprehended and brought before the judge earlier this month. Earlier this month, Andre Butts was also charged with further charges.
A similar set of circumstances surround the drug-related death of fashion designer Katie Gallagher, who was discovered in her Lower East Side apartment last summer.
The police said they are looking into dozens more cases like that, all of which may be connected to the same organization.
At the end of March, authorities connected two sets of robberies near Manhattan nightclubs to 43 druggings, including seven fatal overdoses.
In 2021, as New York began to reopen, experts were polled about the city’s future, and they were almost 75% accurate. Information from Dan Krauth.