A judge ruled that Bryan Riley, the 33-year-old former Marine sharpshooter Florida police say shot and killed a mother, her three-month-old baby, and two others in Florida over the weekend, will be held in custody without bail.
Riley made his first court appearance Monday morning, where he was charged with a myriad of offenses related to the killings, including four counts of first-degree murder and seven counts of attempted murder of law enforcement officers and denied bond.
Riley is in custody at Polk County Jail in Bartow, Florida, according to inmate records.
Police say Riley broke into a home and a neighboring apartment in an unincorporated area of Lakeland, Florida, about 35 miles east of Tampa, on Saturday where he allegedly shot and killed Justice Gleason along with a 33-year-old woman, her 3-month-old baby son and the woman’s 62-year-old grandmother who have not been publicly identified by law enforcement, Sheriff Grady Judd of Polk County said Sunday.
Authorities said the attack also left an 11-year-old girl in the home “significantly injured” with multiple gunshot wounds, who remained in critical condition at a nearby hospital on Monday morning, though she is expected to recover.
Judd said Riley, dressed in camouflage and full-coverage body armor, engaged in a shootout from the home with the police officers who responded to the scene before surrendering.
There is no evidence to suggest Riley was connected in any way to the victims, Judd said.
Authorities say Riley served four years in the Marines and did tours of Iraq and Afghanistan before being honorably discharged, and spent another three years in the reserves. He works as a bodyguard for ESS Global Corporation, a Florida-based security consulting firm that offers bodyguard training. Judd said Riley’s girlfriend told police he had post traumatic stress disorder and depression but had never been violent during their four-year relationship, though he had behaved erratically in the weeks leading up to the attack. “Just because you have mental health problems doesn’t mean you’re not criminally liable,” Judd said Sunday. “There are millions that struggle with mental health that don’t do this.” Riley has a concealed weapons license, Judd said.
Police say Riley first went to the Lakeland neighborhood Saturday evening, where he told residents he had been called by God to prevent a woman named Amber from taking her own life. Neighbors told him no one named Amber lived in the area, Judd said, but Judd said Riley refused to leave until residents called law enforcement. Police said Riley returned roughly nine hours later, where he opened fire. In custody, Judd said Riley told officers he had taken methamphetamine. Police are still investigating the crime scene, Judd said.