DENVER, Colo. – As police took a fourth person into custody in what they described as a burglary ring, a Denver Police Department spokesperson linked together a string of burglaries and a murder on May 16 that has been surrounded by questions.
Police answered a number of those questions surrounding the string of burglaries and home invasions in Denver and Greenwood Village after arresting Dmarco Blake, 17, in southern California.
"This is a very tragic case," Barb Archer, commander of Major Crimes for the Denver Police Department, said. "Our detectives have done extensive legwork on this ... through a combination of efforts through multiple jurisdictions, we can say we have these four people in custody. We've worked hard on this one."
Police said they've linked what they called a burglary ring involving those four people who are in custody, to seven burglaries or home invasions around the time of May 16, including the fatal home invasion on Spruce Street, which led to the death of 27-year-old Timothy Anderson.
The four people in custody are:
Dmarco Blake, 17
Demond Hamilton, 20
Keione Clark, 18
Zjiahnni Lacour, 15
Each of the above, minus Lacour, is being held for the investigation of first-degree murder and first-degree burglary. Police say Lacour, who may be charged as an adult, is being held for investigation of accessory after the fact.
This bulletin shows police identified two suspects, including a 15-year-old, to help advance the case. Both are currently in custody.
Archer said she's confident they have identified the people who shot Anderson amid that crime spree, saying they're focusing the investigation on the murder.
"(The crimes were) all in the same night, all in the general location," Archer said, noting there may be additional suspects as the investigation continues.
The new revelations in the weeks-old case came Tuesday morning just hours after police in California arrested Blake, who had an outstanding warrant.
Police said Blake, and an unidentified man, also from Colorado, were arrested Monday night after an apparent home invasion in Torrance, in the Los Angeles area.
Officers responding to reports of suspicious activity at the home heard a woman screaming and saw two men running from the home. One man was arrested right away and Blake was found hiding in the attic in the garage, police said.
An elderly woman was found beaten inside the home. She was transported to an area hospital and has since been released.
Blake was wanted on a first-degree murder charge in connection with a home invasion and homicide in the 3900 block of Spruce Street in Denver on May 15. Timothy Anderson, 27, was found shot to death inside the home.
Blake’s alleged accomplice in the Denver home invasion, Zjiahnni Lacour, 15, turned herself in on May 20.
In a jail house interview Tuesday afternoon, Clark maintained he was innocent, saying he was wearing an ankle monitor, as was Hamilton, that will exonerate him in the home invasions and murder.
He told Denver7 he had taken sleeping medication the night of the killing, but added he kept hearing Blake say, "I had to do it," that evening.
Authorities have yet to corroborate those details, however.
In an arrest affidavit, police named Clark as a member of a "violent criminal street gang" known as "The Rich Boy Gang."
Victim's Mother Speaks Out
Meanwhile, family members of Timothy Anderson said they want his killers to be held responsible.
"I was justice for Tim, and I want people to remember him," said Cristine Singh. "He was an artist. He had a future, and now he has no future."
Singh said her son was a gentle, kind person, who would have given anyone the shirt off his back. She said he had struggled with mental health issues in the past, but had channeled his energy into creating art. He had also been a caregiver for his grandmother and a friend.
The night before he was murdered, she said, she talked to him on the phone.
"He said, 'I love you mom and tell poppy I love him and I’ll see you tomorrow,' said Singh. "Tomorrow never came."
Sigh said she will attend every day of the trials and is hoping for the death penalty for those involved.
Other victims of the May 16 crime spree
One victim of one of the seven burglaries on the Night of May 16 said his dog finally recovered after being shot in the face.
The victim told Denver7 the suspects, "knocked out five of her teeth, broke her mandible bone and took out part of her tongue."
The dog, which was inside an Alton Street home, underwent multiple surgeries, which racked up $10,000 in vet bills.
Community members have organized fundraisers to help pay for the surgeries.