Arrests have been made for the four male suspects in a Polk County crime spree which reportedly involved an armed robbery, hi-speed shootout, and the murder of two women, a mother and daughter.
All four men have been denied bail and detectives were still attempting to determine whether there was any prior relationship between the man charged with the double homicide, 34-year-old Michael Gordon, and the two victims, Bay News 9 reported.
Michael Gordon was charged on Friday with two counts of first-degree murder in the deaths of 72-year-old Patricia Moran and her 51-year-old daughter, Deborah Royal.
His alleged accomplices in the armed robbery were also indicted on other charges, however, only Gordon was charged with murder in the double homicide of the mother and daughter.
The other three men, as well as Gordon, were charged with armed robbery and attempted murder on a law enforcement officer. The other three suspects are 29-year-old Terrell Williams, 22-year-old Devonere McCune, and 25-year-old Jovan Lamb.
All four men are scheduled to return to court on February 17, 2015.
The crime spree began Thursday evening with the robbery of an Auburndale pawn shop. Witness reports indicated that three men wearing hoodies had robbed the store while another man, a getaway driver, waited outside in a red GMC Jimmy.
Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd said that an officer in Haines City spotted the vehicle and when he attempted to pull the vehicle fitting the profile of the one used in the armed robbery, the suspects began firing on the officer’s patrol car from their SUV. The officer was not injured in the shootout. All four men ran after the vehicle became stuck in sand, allowing authorities to catch up with McCune who was bitten by a Sheriff’s Office K-9.
A short while later, officers were made aware of suspicious activity at a neighbor’s house by a local resident, Sandra Cox, who called 911 on her cell phone after hearing one of her neighbor’s scream “no, no, no,” My Fox Tampa Bay reported.
Shortly after I heard one of my neighbors scream no, no, no […] I just figured something bad was going on, but I couldn’t wrap my mind around it. All I knew is I had to get help
When authorities surrounded the home, a blue car burst out of the garage, charging the officers. The officers fired “many times” according to Judd, hitting the suspect four times before he crashed the vehicle. After crashing, authorities released K-9s who then attacked the suspect after he had already sustained multiple gunshot wounds. ABC News reported that his injuries were not life threatening.
Inside of the home, officers discovered the bodies of the mother and daughter, Moran and Royal. Judd indicated that the two had been “viciously murdered” in a manner which was “much too graphic to describe.”
Sheriff Deputies discovered Williams hiding underneath a tarp in a shed, located in the backyard of a nearby home.
Lamb was apprehended by authorities after he was seen walking through a backyard.
Hundreds of officers, including SWAT teams, descended on the bandits after what Sheriff Judd described as a “well organized” pawn shop robery in Auburndale, Florida. The violence began right around 5:45 pm. on Thursday.
What are your thoughts on this deadly crime spree?