MIAMI (CBS4) – Three men are facing a number of very serious charges after prosecutors say they can tie them to at least five violent robberies, which resulted in an officer being shot and another man’s murder.

Miami-Dade State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle announced the arrests of Willie Barney, 19, Dedrick Brown, 20 and Travares Santiago, 20. All face charges including armed robbery and murder. They are being held without bond.

Prosecutors say the trio’s deadly crime spree began in July, around the time Barney was let out of state prison. He served two years for armed robbery, according to CBS4 News partner The Miami Herald.

“We call them the “Crime Spree Trio,” said Fernandez Rundle in a Thursday afternoon news conference. “It took a lot of work in connecting the dots.”

Fernandez Rundle said the three showed no regard for human life when they robbed their victims.

“Two victims  in two separate incidents said alleged gunman Willie Barney had the look of death in his eyes as he pointed the gun at them,” said Fernandez-Rundle.

Investigators say the trio allegedly targeted gold necklaces their victims were wearing. Fernandez Rundle said her office has seen a spike in these kinds of crime because the cost of gold is at an all time high, more than $1700 an ounce.

The wife of one of their alleged victims, Barrington Kerr, is relieved an arrest has been made in her husband’s murder.

“It’s just unbelievable, it’s like you are in a nightmare,” said Donna Kerr. “When they killed him they took my heart. Now I am all torn up. I feel like we have to have justice for my husband. We must get justice.”

According to the paper, Kerr was shot dead on the 300 block of Northwest 190th Street on Sept. 18. Police say the men snatched the gold chain off of his neck before opening fire.

The men are also accused of robbing and shooting off-duty Miami-Dade Police officer Herman Joseph as he did maintenance behind a Liberty City church on September 23. Joseph survived.

Prosecutors say they are working to link the men to at least four other crimes in Miami-Dade and Broward Counties. They say in nearly all the incidents, the men using a maroon Pontiac as the getaway car.

Anyone with information is urged to call Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at (305) 471-TIPS.

(©2012 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. CBS4 news partner The Miami Herald contributed material for this report)


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