WASHINGTON, DC — A man wanted for a string of five shootings targeting homeless men in Washington, D.C. and New York City was arrested Tuesday.
Gerald Brevard III, 30, was taken into custody walking near his residence in Southeast D.C., according to the Washington Post, which reported his family said he suffered from mental illness.
Agents from the D.C. office of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives reported they had arrested the suspect around 2:30 a.m.,. in the 2300 block of Pennsylvania Avenue, Southeast, according to a post on ATF Washington’s official Twitter account.
The suspect was then transported to the Metropolitan Police Department, where he was being interviewed by the Homicide Branch, according to a 5:40 a.m. post on MPD’s official Twitter account.
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“We are relieved to have this suspect in custody and off our streets,” said ATF Washington Field Division Special Agent in Charge Charlie J. Patterson, in a statement. “This investigation was our primary focus and we worked closely with our law enforcement partners in D.C. and New York City bringing all of our respective investigative skills and unique capabilities to this case. The National Integrated Ballistic Information Network was particularly crucial in this investigation, allowing us to quickly match ballistic evidence connecting all five shootings to the same firearm. We are also thankful to our community members who provided tips to law enforcement during this investigation.”
ATF confirmed that multiple charges were pending in the case but was unable to provide more details.
D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser, New York City Mayor Eric Adams, MPD Chief Robert J. Contee, III, and New York City Police Department Commissioner Keechant Sewell released a statement around 11:30 a.m. on Tuesday, officially announcing the arrest.
“We want to thank everyone in Washington, DC, New York City, and elsewhere who sent in tips about this suspect,” Bowser said. “I also want to thank Mayor Adams and his team in New York, our team at MPD, as well as our federal partners at the ATF for their collaboration and partnership. We said that the work to remove this man from our streets was urgent and our communities responded.”
Five recent shootings of homeless men in the District and NYC were linked by guns used in both cities, according to police officials. Two of the shootings were fatal and deemed homicides.
MPD, NYPD and ATF announced on Sunday that they were pursuing the same suspect in all five shootings due to similarities in the cases and ballistics evidence found at each of the crime scenes.
Bowser and Adams joined law enforcement officials from both cities during a Monday evening news conference in D.C. They called on the public to help identify the man wanted in the cases that involved homeless men who were sleeping on the street when they were shot by a male suspect.
The shootings began on March 3, when MPD officers found a man suffering from gunshot wounds around 4 a.m. in the 1100 block of New York Avenue, Northeast in D.C. The man was taken to a nearby hospital, where he was treated for non-life threatening injuries.
Related: $70K Reward In Shooting Of 5 Homeless Men; Suspect Video Released
Two other shootings occurred in the District. In the first, a man was treated for non-life-threatening injuries after being shot early last Tuesday, in the 1700 block of H Street, Northeast.
Early Wednesday morning, the body of the third shooting victim was discovered after D.C. Fire & EMS extinguished a tent fire in 400 block of New York Avenue, Northeast.
At first, police did not link this case to the other shootings. It was only after the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner conducted an autopsy that it was discovered the victim had suffered multiple gunshot and stab wounds. His death was declared a homicide.
In New York City on Saturday, two other homeless men were shot, one fatally. The first victim, a 38-year-old man, was shot in the arm around 4:30 a.m., while he slept on King Street near Varick Street. The fifth victim died after suffering multiple gunshot wounds to the head and neck around 6 a.m.
Police were able to link the shooting cases in the two cities after a detective in NYPD’s homicide unit saw an image on social media of the man wanted in Wednesday’s fatal shooting in the District. After he shared the photo with his colleagues, NYPD determined the suspect was the same as the person wanted in the two shootings in their city. Reaching out through the ATF, the two police departments began sharing information and data.
During Monday evening’s news conference, officials announced that a combined $70,000 reward was being offered for information that led to the arrest and conviction of the person wanted in connection with the five shooting incidents.