Arrest made after men drugged, robbed and killed at New York City gay bars

Police in New York City have arrested a third person in relation to the deaths of two gay men who died after being drugged and robbed following nights out at gay bars last year.

Social worker Julio Ramirez, 25, died in the backseat of a taxi in April and John Umberger, a 33-year-old political consultant, was found dead in an Upper East Side townhouse in May.

Jayqwan Hamilton is the third man arrested in relation to the deaths, with Jacob Barroso and Robert Demalo arrested earlier in April.

The trio are all facing charges of second degree murder, robbery, identify theft, grand larceny, and conspiracy, according to NBC affiliate News 4.

Hamilton is considered the final suspect, with Manhattan district attorney Alvin Bragg holding a press conference to announce Police had finished their investigation.

There, he said: “Their motive, we allege, was simple: to make money.”

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According to News 4, police have discovered 15 other victims that were drugged and robbed, and think there could be more.

New York Police believe the trio hunted for victims at least once a month between September 2021 and August 2022.

‘We will never discriminate against anyone in this city’

Umberger’s mother, Linda Clary, who was central to getting police to investigate the deaths as homicides, told the outlet she wanted to make sure such incidents did not happen to anyone else.

“How can you get justice when you can’t bring a dead person back?” She said.

The deaths, which were first recorded as drug overdoses, were only ruled homicides in March.

Meanwhile, at the press conference, city officials defended the pace of their investigation.

As reported by NBC News, New York mayor Eric Adams said officials needed to “get it right” and “sometimes the desire to get it right collides with the immediacy that people would like to see justice”.

Police Commissioner Keechant L. Sewell refuted a question about detectives being dismissive because the victims were gay, saying: “We will never discriminate against anyone in this city.”

“They are all part of our communities, and we will make sure that we affords any concerns that they have.”

Two other men, Andre Butts and Shane Hoskin, are also facing charges in relation to the robberies, but not the deaths.

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