Bayou Body Count: Burning Down The House

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There's the guy who allegedly drove over a woman and then there's the fellow who allegedly shot three dudes and burned the house down.Yes, these are just a few of the many murders that the hard-working Houston homicide detectives have ostensibly solved over the past week.

It started out as just a fender-bender near 190 Meyerland Plaza on Saturday afternoon. George Theobald had crashed into the car of Brenda Romano of Yoakum, Texas and Robyn Romano, who lives in Houston. Police say the drivers got out to talk about the accident but then Theobald tried to run away before the cops could get there.

When the two Romano women tried to keep Theobald from fleeing, police say, Theobald allegedly got back into his car, threw the gear in reverse and backed up full-speed into them, pinning Robyn Romano between his car and hers. Theobald then allegedly ran over Brenda Romano as he drove off, police say. Brenda Romano, 56, died, and Robyn Romano suffered a broken leg.

On Sunday, police tracked Theobald, 39, down at the Western Inn Motel on the North Loop, where they arrested him on the charge of murder. Police say Theobald admitted to his role in the killing.

John Church is behind bars after police arrested him and charged him with murder on Thursday. Officers were called out to 6350 West Sam Houston Parkway North to respond to a knifing and found Willie Valliere, 35, of Stafford lying on the ground suffering from a stab wound to his chest, police say. Police immediately arrested Church, who later admitted to his part in the slaying, police say.

It almost sounds like a movie. A man walks into a home, shoots up a room full of people, and when he leaves, the whole place goes up in flames.

Yet that was the scene Sunday evening at 1125 Brooks, police say.

Investigators claim that Ken Pham, 36, was seen leaving the residence on Brooks after a flurry of gunshots had been fired inside. One witness told the cops that as he saw Pham locking up the home's door, he asked Pham a question. Pham them allegedly pointed a gun at the witness and then got into a car and drove away. As he was leaving, the home began to burn down, police say. Three men inside the residence were found shot to death.

Police are on the hunt for Pham, they say.


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On October 24, police found three dead men in and around a white pickup truck parked along the 11400 block of Sandhurst. Narcisco Briagas, 26, Miguel Morales, 30, and Roman Barragan, 16, has been shot to death.

Detectives found their man a week ago -- his name is 20-year-old David McFarland. He is in the Harris County jail charged with capital murder. Police had already arrested Jonathan Nickerson, 18, on the same charge for the killings, police say. Detectives believe the motive was robbery.


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Finally, police have arrested 41-year-old Albert Young for the October 27 killing of Willie Davis. Young is charged with murder.

Police say that Davis and a bunch of friends started arguing with another group of guys at 7111 Harwin when at least two men opened fire on Davis. Police say they developed leads that led them to Young.


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