A group of eleven people are accused of gang-raping a 16-year-old Madison County teen -- and this morning our cameras were there as police raided their homes to find the suspects.
“They're flight risks, escape risks,” said Madisonville Police Lieutenant Jonathan Zitzmann. “And best case scenario you approach them in a setting where they are sleeping; they're tired or it's dark outside and it's safer for the officer and the suspect.”
Before the sun could rise, Madisonville Police Lieutenant Jonathon Zitzmann along with the chief of police, officers and DPS State Troopers surrounded a home on Hope Circle in Madisonville.
“What we believe is someone introduced her to meth and brought her to a residence,” explained Zitzmann.
Zitzmann says a teen who was allegedly under the influence of crystal meth was gang-raped by almost a dozen people.
“We were notified from her mother and after we were notified we took the juvenile to Scotty's House in Bryan/College Station for a forensic interview,” explained Zitzmann. “Because of that interview, we were able to gain all of the information we needed.”
The accused suspects are 24-year-old Debrodrick Manning, 23-year-old Brandon Gilbert, 19-year-old LaFelix Turner, 19-year-old Derrick Kyle, 25-year-old Steven Manning, 20-year-old Adrian Butler, 24-year-old Hannable Craig. At last check, authorities say 33-year-old Earl James Tyler, 19-year-old Lorenzo Ford and 35-year-old female Sondress Lotts remain at large.
“The sad thing about this is this female is 16 years old and being introduced to methamphetamines, and being gang-raped by 11, 12, 13 and allegedly 2 females, it's absolutely horrendous,” said Zitzmann.
The suspects, their families and even neighbors were caught off guard -- many sleeping at the time police showed up at their doorstep. Some were even taken to jail barefoot and in boxer shorts.
They were not happy to wake up to the sound or sight of police -- and they certainly were not happy to see our camera.
“A lot of these guys have some sort of ties into gang-related activity and have a history into drug dealing and drug use and unfortunately this drug use and dealing has led to more severe crimes,” said Zitzmann.
The suspects are being charged with Child trafficking and Sexual assault of a child.
“We still consider them a child and therefore we have to be the voice for those children because these crimes against children are unacceptable,” said Zitzmann.