Reed was picked up on Friday night after getting off a bus in Independence, Mo. He is being held in federal custody and is being charged with two counts of first-degree murder, one count of first-degree assault, and three counts of armed criminal action. Police are also charging him with a federal weapons charge for transporting his gun across state lines. The young man is being held on $2 million bail.
St. Louis police and FBI agents first became aware of a connection between the shootings when they discovered that the suspect had used the same gun and had worn the same shoes at all the crime scenes. The gun, which is a .40 caliber Smith & Wesson, was allegedly used to shoot seven people in the area, only one of which survived. Bullet casings have currently been found at three out of the seven crime scenes.
When police picked up Reed he was carrying the gun and had on the same shoes.
After discovering that connection, St. Louis police officers looked at cell phone networks to see if any phones pinged at the same location. Reed’s phone was connected to two of the crime scenes on the nights of the murders and officers were able to connect the number to an Amtrak ticket that the suspect purchased to bring him back to St Louis.
FBI agents were able to follow Reed onto the train and later onto a bus before picking him up and bringing him into custody.
Officers believe the victims were random and according to their investigation, all the victims had some connection to the sex work industry or the transgender community. Most of the victims were women.
The deadly shootings took place between September 13 and November 1. The first fatal shooting was of 16-year-old Marnay Haynes, who was fatally shot at the 9900 block of Glen Owen Drive at around 9:30 p.m.
Haynes had been found in the middle of the street and she had been shot multiple times. The 16-year-old had just been reported as a runaway.
Three days later, police found 49-year-old Pamela Abercrombie bleeding out in St. Louis County. Abercrombie was the oldest victim of the shooter and she died in the hospital.
After the death of Abercrombie, police found 24-year-old Casey Ross dead in a vacant lot and then were alerted to the shooting death of 40-year-old Lester Robinson in Ferguson, Missouri. Robinson was the last death in connection with Perez Reed to happen in the state.
On November 1, Reed allegedly killed two victims in an apartment complex in Kansas City, Kan. The two victims, ages 35 and 25, were found shot in their separate apartments. Residents of Wyandotte Towers later released balloons to remember the lives of their slain neighbors.
Reed was arrested four days after the Kansas City killings.
Police also believe that they can connect Perez Reed to the September 12 shooting of a St. Louis man. This man was able to survive getting shot multiple times in the chest, but has since developed serious injuries and a permanent disability because of the crime.
After Perez Reed was charged in connection with the shootings, police became aware of other petty crimes that the suspect has committed in the past. Including, reckless driving, domestic harassment, first-degree arson, and assault.
A court date has yet to be set for Perez Reed and police continue to investigate the crimes to see if there are any other connections.