Two Baton Rouge men were indicted Thursday on second-degree murder charges in the drug-related slaying of a couple whose bullet-riddled bodies were found Feb. 7 in the trunk of a car.
An East Baton Rouge Parish grand jury charged Patrick James Ramirez, 30, and Kendrick Deandre Johnson, 29, in the killing of Jarrett Stanley and Latonya Wright.
Ramirez, 263 Gatebriar St., and Johnson, 4430 Hatcher Ave., Apt. 208, each were indicted on two counts of second-degree murder.
A second-degree murder conviction carries an automatic sentence of life in prison.
An anonymous caller told investigators with the East Baton Rouge Parish Violent Crime Unit on Feb. 7 that Stanley, 28, and Wright, 27, were killed at Ramirez’s home “during a drug transaction,” according to an arrest warrant.
The caller identified Ramirez as being responsible for the killings, the warrant said.
Investigators obtained a search warrant for Ramirez’s home on Gatebriar Street and found human blood using a chemical agent and an alternate light source, the warrant stated.
The blood was located in the living room, which had been cleaned with bleach and a mop, the warrant said.
Investigators also found a suspected bullet hole in Ramirez’s stove. The hole was covered with tape and was freshly painted, the warrant stated.
A “confidential cooperating individual” told investigators that Stanley and Wright were at Ramirez’s home Feb. 4 and that they got there in a Saturn Ion, the same type vehicle the couple’s bodies were found in Feb. 7, the warrant said.
The informant told investigators that Ramirez was armed with a 9 mm handgun at the time, and that Johnson was at Ramirez’s house Feb. 4 with a .44-caliber handgun, the warrant stated.
Investigators found the couple’s bodies in the trunk of a Saturn Ion parked on Dutton Avenue near Airline Highway, according to the East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff’s Office.
The gruesome discovery was made after investigators received an anonymous tip from someone who said there could be two dead people inside a “blueish colored” car on Dutton, the warrant said.
When investigators arrived on the scene, they saw blood coming from the trunk of a 2006 Saturn Ion. Stanley and Wright, whose bodies were found in the trunk, had been shot multiple times, the warrant stated.
The case has been assigned to state District Judge Mike Erwin.
Stanley was wanted in a drug and stolen gun case when he was killed, Baton Rouge police have said.
Wright was booked in that case in December on one count each of possession with intent to distribute marijuana and possession of a firearm with a controlled dangerous substance.