GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Four of six suspects in an armed robbery and murder were formally charged Thursday, three with murder and one with a lesser offense.
Zachary Bennett, Kevin Berry, Chris Duncan, Isaac Fezzey, Jaman Parish and Tyler Rohn all face charges in connection to the Sept. 8 homicide of 34-year-old Brent Luttrell.
Berry, Fezzey, and Rohn were each charged with multiple felonies, including felony murder Thursday. Zachery Bennett faced charges, the most serious of which armed robbery charge.
The sheriff’s department said Berry and Fezzey had no prior criminal records.
“This is precedent setting that we have six people that are being arrested in one homicide,” said Undersheriff Jon Hess. Hess said that’s usually because six people aren’t typically all directly involved in a homicide, or a crime potentially leading up to one.
At a Thursday press conference, representatives from the sheriff’s department pointed to one of the suspects, Chris Duncan, as the apparent mastermind behind the alleged armed robbery.
He was described as the person who seemed to “put the ball in motion.”
Kent County Sheriff’s Department Lt. Ron Gates said that Duncan, and the victim, Luttrell had been friends.
“They were friends at one time and they actually had a girlfriend in common that was one of the problems that Christopher had with Brent is that Christopher’s girlfriend ended up dating Brent,” said Gates.
Duncan will not face murder charges, the sheriff’s department said, because he was not at the scene of the crime.
But the main motive for the crime was money, Hess said. Luttrell was known to post pictures of large sums of money on social media.
“It was a robbery for money. Originally it was a plan for robbery for money. An unknown amount of money was suspected to be in the home. It was planned to be a robbery for money,” said Hess.
At the formal charging of at least one of the suspects, district court judge Sara Smolenski said that a suspect was charged with stealing both money and drugs from Luttrell’s home.
24 Hour News 8 was told, after midnight on Sept. 8, a group of men broke into Luttrell’s Pinewood Street home in Spencer Township as Luttrell, his cousin, their girlfriends and one of the women’s children slept.
Luttrell made it out of the house, but was pulled into the suspects’ car. He was shot and stabbed, dumped onto Lincoln Lake Avenue near 17 Mile Road, and left to die.
Family members of both the victim, and the suspects, showed up to court Thursday afternoon. Emotions were high, and there was a heated exchange between the two groups.