Florida prosecutors are seeking the death penalty for a former Marines sniper who allegedly broke into the home of an innocent family earlier this month, murdering four people, including a 3-month-old boy in the arms of his mother, on the pretext that the victims were child sex traffickers.
In its notice of intent on Friday, the state attorney’s office for the 10th judicial circuit described several aggravating factors that could justify the death penalty for Bryan Riley, 33, of Brandon, reported The Ledger.
In the early morning hours of September 5, Riley went to two different houses on the same property off North Socrum Loop Road in North Lakeland and shot a 62-year-old woman, a family dog, a 26-year-old man. years. old woman, her 3-month-old baby boy she was holding at the time, and the woman’s 40-year-old boyfriend Judge Gleason, the Polk County Sheriff’s Office said in an earlier statement.
Riley also shot an 11-year-old girl several times. She was seriously injured but survived.
ZERO TRAILER MARINE; OVER SLAIN FLORIDA FAMILY, GIRL ‘TORTURED’ IN A DELUSIOUS RESCUE OP: SHERIFF
Gleason’s family has allowed the sheriff’s office to use his name, but family members of the other victims do not want their names released, as per Marsy’s law, the statement said.
Earlier last week, Riley was indicted by a Polk County grand jury with 22 counts, including four counts of first degree murder, one count of attempted first degree murder, one count of kidnapping, one count of aggravated abuse, two counts of burglary, seven counts of attempted first degree murder of a law enforcement officer, one count of animal cruelty, one count of arson, two counts of shooting in occupied accommodation and two counts of shooting in occupied accommodation, State Attorney Brian Haas announced.
Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd previously said Riley mistakenly believed the family was involved in child sex trafficking and that God told him to rescue an alleged underage victim named “Amber.” There was no child of that name at home. Riley ran into the family after seeing a man mowing his lawn with a young girl in the yard he believed to be the victim of trafficking, Judd said.
Riley, wearing a bulletproof vest, had three weapons with him and fired at least 100 shots in the main house and a smaller one in the back where the grandmother lived, officials said. Officers fired about 60 shots in a shootout that left Riley with a gunshot wound to the abdomen. Riley surrendered after that.
“Over Labor Day weekend Sunday morning at 4:20 a.m., an evil man committed mass murder by charging into a house and killing four people, including a three-month-old baby. of that, he tortured and shot an 11-year-old girl up to seven times, ”Judd said in a Sept. 10 video asking for donations to cover hospital bills and funeral costs. utter devastation. ”
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There was no relationship between the victims and Riley, Judd said. Riley is being held without bail and has yet to plead guilty.
Riley served as a Marine in Iraq and Afghanistan and worked as a security guard, most notably at a church near Orlando. After this recent job, his four-year-old girlfriend told investigators Riley started talking about communicating with God but not about violence.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.