- Associated Press - Monday, August 1, 2016

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) - A St. Louis grand jury indictment unsealed Monday against five people accuses some of them of four shooting deaths that a prosecutor says were linked to heroin dealing.

The 30-count indictment charges Marquise Henderson with three first-degree murder counts - one each for three killings over an eight-day span in January. Henderson, 26, also faces at least 10 counts of armed criminal action, as well as several felonies apiece of unlawful use of a weapon and assault.

Marcus Tyrone Jackson, 21, is charged with one first-degree murder count related to the Jan. 12 shooting death of Patrick Hunter, whom a prosecutor said in a court filing was gunned down while trying to buy heroin. Jackson also is accused of several counts of armed criminal action, and a weapons charge.

Three other defendants are accused of various felonies, ranging from robbery to assault, armed criminal action and unlawful use of weapon.

Court documents allege that guns seized from a home in February after two undercover St. Louis County detectives were fired upon were linked by lab testing to the four January killings. Neither of the detectives was wounded.

The indictment did not specify any connection among the defendants or whether any of the killings were related. But Beth Orwick, the chief trial assistant in the city prosecutor’s office, told The Associated Press on Monday that “we do know the five of (the defendants) are all involved in heroin drug trafficking and heroin distribution.”

Online court records did not show whether any of the accused men have attorneys.

Henderson is accused of the drive-by shooting deaths of Tyler Bogan, 23, and Henry Williams, 24, on Jan. 10 while those victims were inside a car in north St. Louis. Eight days later, the indictment alleges, Henderson shot and killed 29-year-old Lenny Hogan.

Jackson is accused of fatally shooting Patrick Hunter, 23, in the head while he was driving, according to police. Hunter, who lived just blocks from where Bogan and Williams were killed, died the next day at a hospital.

Court records show that Henderson was sentenced in 2008 to 10 years in prison after he pleaded guilty to charges of robbery, armed criminal action and resisting arrest.

All of the suspects are in custody, and a prosecutor is pressing in court filings that Henderson, Jackson and another man be ordered jailed without bond, “given the danger that each of these defendants pose to remaining surviving victims.”

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