Police name three individuals linked to NYC gay bar slayings, druggings
The New York City Police Department has named three individuals that they are seeking in connection with the investigation into a series of deaths of men at gay bars in New York City.
The NYPD is asking for the public's help in finding three men, who were identified as Jayqwan Hamilton, 35, Robert Demaio, 34, and Jacob Barroso, 30. All three have New York City addresses, police said.
The three are being sought in connection with two murders that are considered part of a "citywide robbery pattern." Between September 2021 and August 2022 a total of 17 incidents occurred that are "being investigated as part of this pattern at this time," the NYPD told CBS News on Saturday.
Julio Cesar Ramirez, 25, and John Umberger, 33, were robbed and drugged – five weeks apart – after leaving gay bars in Hell's Kitchen, CBS News reported. Both men were seen leaving the bar with multiple strangers; Ramirez left with three men and Umberger left with two men their families told CBS New York.
It is not clear how the three men who are being sought were connected to the investigation into the men's deaths. On March 30, CBS News obtained heavily redacted documents that indicted at least five people related to the deaths of Ramirez and Umberger. The exact number of people indicted was unclear because of the redactions. In total, 19 counts were handed down, but it was unclear what many of the charges were and who was being charged because that information was sealed.
The documents do name one person, Shane Hoskins, who was not among those named by the NYPD on Saturday. Hoskins was facing multiple counts that include robbery, conspiracy, grand larceny and identity theft. Court documents allege that Hoskins was part of a plot to approach intoxicated people leaving nightclubs, engage them in conversation and then offer them incapacitating drugs so "their ability to perceive events became diminished" and they could rob the victims of their "phones and credit cards" or other property.
Hoskins would then use credit card information stored on victims' cell phones to make unauthorized money transfers and purchases. The proceeds would then be split with co-conspirators.
Hoskins is next due to appear in court on June 8. He is being held in jail on $50,000 bail and a $100,000 bond.
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