A 33-year-old man was charged Monday with four counts of murder in connection with a spate of shootings in the Los Angeles area that left three homeless men dead.
Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascón said his office had charged Jerrid Joseph Powell with the killings after he was arrested in a separate fatal shooting of a San Dimas man during a robbery.
Authorities say Powell began attacking homeless men in the city on Nov. 26, shooting a 37-year-old man who was sleeping on a couch on the street. Powell is also accused of shooting a 62-year-old man a day later who was pushing a shopping cart. And on Nov. 29, Powell allegedly shot a 52-year-old man early in the morning.
Los Angeles Police Chief Michel Moore said officials had not identified a motive in the killings, according to the Los Angeles Times. But Moore described a video of one of the victims being killed as “bone-chilling,” saying the gunman gave no warning before opening fire.
Police had initially appealed to the public for information about the killings. But authorities used surveillance footage to link Powell to the robbery last week after he allegedly followed a man home in San Dimas, a city in the Los Angeles area. Powell is accused of shooting the man and stealing from the house. Police later linked Powell to the killings of the unhoused men.
“I want to extend my deepest appreciation to the incredible men and women of law enforcement who worked tirelessly to bring justice to our community and arrest this individual,” Gascón said in a statement. “The swift actions of law enforcement undoubtedly saved lives this week.”
Powell was scheduled to be arraigned on Monday, but it was postponed until January. If convicted on all charges, he could face life in prison without the possibility of parole.