A murder suspect in Florida was found and arrested this week in an unlikely place — the home of TikTok stars the Island Boys.
TMZ reports that neither Alex nor Franky Venegas themselves was arrested when the cops raided their rental on Monday, but they did nap Andrew James Thomas from the home. Police say one half of the Island Boys, Alex, was home when SWAT showed up, and his cooperation led to the recovery of a gun they believe the suspect hid in the laundry room.
Thomas was wanted in connection with a drive-by shooting that killed an 8-year-old girl in Palm Beach.
Ron’Ziyah Atkins was playing outside with her family when she was shot multiple times Friday evening, ultimately dying after being rushed to the hospital. She is not believed to have been the target of the drive-by.
“I’m happy that they did arrest somebody,” said the girl’s mother, Jamekea McGee. “I guess it doesn’t change the fact of anything, but I guess I’m okay with it.”
The police department had previously offered a $25,000 reward for information about the killing, though it isn’t immediately clear how they became interested in Thomas as a suspect.
The Island Boys are a rap duo who had a freestyle song go viral on TikTok last year. They have since struggled to find mainstream acceptance but boast several million followers on the social media platform between their two individual accounts.
It isn’t clear at this time if Thomas was staying at their house or just dropping by for a visit, but their manager told TMZ the Venegas twins only knew him as “a quiet quit and he would come and hang out and do his thing and go back to whatever he got going on.”
“But we had no clue about any of these allegations towards him,” he said.
Thomas was arrested on charges of first-degree murder, gun possession, and an unrelated violation of probation regarding a robbery.