RICHMOND, Va. – Two men arrested Saturday in the killing of a Richmond family are also suspected of slitting the throats of a musician, his wife and their two young daughters six days earlier, police said.
All seven victims were found bound with tape in their homes, authorities said. The musician's home was set ablaze on New Year's Day, and the other was ransacked Friday in what police described as an apparent robbery.
On Saturday, as detectives in two states were tracking down the suspects, more than 1,400 people packed into a Richmond theater to remember the victims.
Police released few details about the two men charged in the killings and didn't say if detectives had found any personal connections between the suspects and the victims or any possible motive beyond robbery.
The two men were arrested in a house in West Philadelphia by Philadelphia police and a SWAT team, said Capt. Benjamin Naish, a police spokesman.
"I understand there was some struggle, but there was no major incident," Naish said.
Ricky Gavon Gray, believed to be from Arlington, and Ray Joseph Dandridge, both 28, were both charged Saturday in Virginia with conspiracy to commit murder and auto theft, Richmond Police Chief Rodney Monroe said at a news conference Saturday night, publicly connecting the two crime scenes for the first time.
"We believe we have put an end to what we consider seven very serious cases in this area," the chief said.
Dandridge had been released from James River Correctional Center in November after serving a 10-year term for robbery and use of a firearm, the Richmond Times-Dispatch reported.
His father, Ronald Wilson, said Dandridge had left his Philadelphia home on Christmas to visit his mother and Gray in Virginia and the two returned to Philadelphia Friday afternoon, the paper reported.
It was the investigation into Friday's triple homicide that led police to Dandridge and Gray, Monroe said. He said the detectives also found evidence linking the assailants to the four killings on New Year's Day, but he declined to give specifics.
Monroe said additional charges against the two are possible once they are returned to Virginia. He said authorities were not looking for anyone else in connection with the killings.
The two sets of vicious attacks in the span of a week cast a pall over Richmond, a city of about 200,000.
Bryan Harvey, 49, had been a fixture on the local rock music scene since the mid-'80s — most notably as guitarist and singer for the critically acclaimed duo House of Freaks, which released five albums on three labels from 1987 to 1995.
His wife, Kathryn Harvey, 39, was the half-sister of actor Steven Culp, who played Rex Van De Kamp on "Desperate Housewives." She co-owned World of Mirth, a quirky toy and novelty store in Carytown, a 12-block stretch of trendy boutiques, cafes and coffee shops just west of downtown.
The couple and their daughters, Stella, 9, and Ruby, 4, were found in their basement, bound with tape and with their throats cut, authorities said.
The Harveys had invited friends for a chili party on New Year's Day. Bandmate Johnny Hott, the first to arrive, entered the unlocked front door and was engulfed in smoke. He shouted for a neighbor to call 911, and authorities discovered a fire and the bodies in the basement.
Less than a week later, in another Richmond neighborhood, the bodies of Percyell Tucker, 55; Mary Baskerville, 47; and her 21-year-old daughter, Ashley Baskerville, were found Friday, also bound with duct tape. Monroe did not say how the three were killed.
Friends and family said Tucker, was a forklift operator, and Mary Baskerville, worked at a nearby cleaners, the Times-Dispatch reported. Ashley Baskerville had recently gotten out of jail and was looking for work and taking classes, her aunts told the paper.
A makeshift memorial of flowers and candles had built up in Kathryn Harvey's store during the week, along with condolences scrawled on a large poster and sealed letters addressed in children's handwriting to Stella and Ruby.
John Morand, co-owner of a Richmond recording studio and Bryan Harvey's friend for 20 years, said Harvey was the antithesis of the stereotypical rock musician.
"Music was a big part of his life, but he did other things," Morand said. "He was a great dad. You couldn't get a more normal suburban couple."