A Jefferson Parish grand jury on Thursday handed up a 23-count indictment against two New Orleans residents accused of killing a Metairie man and his son during a home invasion in April.
The indictment charges Dexter Allen, 17, with second-degree murder in the fatal shootings of David Pence, 56, and Nicholas Pence, 25, at their home in the 3700 block of Clifford Drive on April 22. Haraquon DeGruy, 18, was charged with two counts of being a principal to the murders.
Though DeGruy is not suspected of pulling the trigger of the shotgun authorities say her co-defendant used to kill the Pences, both she and Allen face mandatory life imprisonment if convicted.
The indictment also accuses DeGruy and Allen of burglarizing 19 cars on the same day David and Nicholas Pence were gunned down.
Jefferson Parish investigators said DeGruy and Allen were breaking into vehicles around the Whitney Heights neighborhood on April 22 before the killings.
They were arrested April 24 after leading police in New Orleans on a chase in the white Toyota Highlander that Jefferson authorities said had been seen casing the Pences’ neighborhood. Allen tried to escape by jumping off the Interstate 10 high-rise bridge into the Industrial Canal, but he was quickly captured.
The Sheriff’s Office said DeGruy confessed her role in the murders and in the process implicated Allen once they were in custody.
Authorities say Allen stole the Highlander at gunpoint from a woman in New Orleans East. Allen also tried to use the Highlander to run over a U.S. marshal trying to detain him and DeGruy during the April 24 chase, police allege.
Prosecutors in New Orleans charged Allen with those crimes in a bill of information filed June 10, records show. He has pleaded not guilty.
Allen remains in Orleans Parish Prison in lieu of $760,000 bail. DeGruy is in the Jefferson Parish Correctional Center in Gretna on $510,000 bail.