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Drugs & triple murder linked
Rochester, N.Y. -- Three men already charged with drug crimes are now facing new charges of first-degree murder.
We've known for two months a triple homicide Feb. 24 was linked to a drug raid six days later.
Now 13WHAM News has learned more about the connection.
The man at the center of the alleged drug operation is Andre McFarlane. After being deported four times, he has been living here under an assumed name. It's alleged he also uses another alias in the drug trade: Beanie.
Police said Beanie routinely distributed large amounts of marijuana from a home base on Clifford Avenue. In a raid Feb. 28, ATF agents confiscated 78 pounds of pot.
Prosecutors would not say if the drugs were at the center of the murder.
"There is a relationship between the two that has been reported," said prosecutor Kelly Wolford. "I can't get into the specifics of that, that is."
Sources told 13WHAM News one of the murdered women who lived in the Chili Avenue apartment was being paid by Beanie to intercept marijuana from Arizona. When the shipments turned up short, it's alleged Beanie turned to two associates to retaliate.
The men used the identities "Tommy G" and "Brando." Police said their real names are Steve Fulcott and Marlando Allen. Court papers alleged the three men were involved in the Chili Avenue killings together.
Along with the intended target, two others in the apartment were killed. The victims were identified as Michael Nelson and cousins Jeremeliah and Jacquelyn Simmons. Each of the victims was shot multiple times.
Investigators recovered 10 casings which ballistics tests have linked to a 9 mm gun found in McFarlane's apartment.
Fulcott and McFarlane were charged with three counts of first-degree murder. Allen was charged with one count. The connection between the drug ring and the murders will be presented to a grand jury, which could result in additional charges.
Police have followed a trial of evidence and have carefully pieced together the details of what they said occurred. It has taken two months, but family members of the victims finally have some answers.
"Every day they are reliving the death of their loved ones," said Wolford. "It is a very difficult situation, even though it is one step in the right direction for them."