Three men accused of a quadruple murder in East Texas allegedly used a handgun stolen from one of the victims in the slayings, police said.
Jesse Pawlowski, 20, Billy Phillips, 37, and Dylan Welch, 21, have been charged with capital murder in connection with the deaths of two men and two women in a home near New Summerfield.
Pawlowski was allegedly involved in a polyamorous relationship with the two male victims, John Clinton, 18, and Jeff Gerla, 47, who he met on a dating app, the Longview News-Journal reported, citing an arrest affidavit.
Clinton’s mother, Ami Hickey, 39, and the woman she was dating, Amanda Bain, 39, were identified as the other two victims, according to the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office.
Pawlowski allegedly told investigators Clinton had a handgun he was selling for $500, and Pawlowski was to facilitate the sale between Clinton and Phillips.
According to the affidavit, Pawlowski allegedly said he and Phillips then hatched a plan to steal the gun. Late in the evening on July 19, Pawlowski went to Gerla’s home, where the three other victims were also present.
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Pawlowski allegedly texted Phillips to come to the residence. When he arrived, Pawlowski and Clinton met him at the end of the driveway, where Clinton handed Phillips the gun.
Pawlowski told police Phillips allegedly then shot Clinton “in the back of the head,” the affidavit states.
Pawlowski, Phillips and Welch next went into Gerla’s home and Phillips allegedly fatally shot him and the two female victims, according to the affidavit.
The affidavit alleges the trio then stole two shotguns from the residence as well as Gerla’s car, which they planned to sell.
In police interviews, both Phillips and Welch denied they were involved in the murders or theft. Phillips, the affidavit states, told Pawlowski to “get rid” of the stolen items.
Pawlowski, Phillips and Welch are being held on $1 million bond each in the Cherokee County Jail.
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