A man who was acquitted in the 1998 killing of two teenagers has been charged with murder in the shooting deaths this week of three people in Kansas City, Missouri. Brandon Howell, 34, also faces charges of assault and motor vehicle theft, prosecutors said at a press conference.
The three shooting victims were identified Wednesday as Susan Choucroun, 69, and a mother and son — Lorene Hurst, 88, and Darrel Hurst, 63. Two other people were seriously injured. All five were found shot in the same neighborhood.
The suspect was arrested after another crime was reported later Tuesday in a different part of Kansas City. Police said three people were assaulted at a Motel 6, and a van belonging to one of the shooting victims from earlier in the day was found nearby. Police arrested Howell two miles away and said he was carrying a 12-gauge shotgun.
Prosecutors did not specify a motive. In a statement to NBC affiliate KSHB, the Hurst family said that Darrel Hurst was visiting his mother when they were both killed. “We are unsure of all the events that transpired that day, but we are comforted knowing they were together,” the family said.
Howell was accused of murder in the 1998 killing of the two teenagers. He was acquitted in 2009. He also served prison time for a 2000 conviction on charges of kidnapping, assault, robbery and cruelty to animals.
— Elizabeth Chuck