DEA NEWS RELEASE
(DETROIT) – Three individuals were charged in a six-count indictment, unsealed today, which alleges capital murder, heroin and cocaine distribution, and related firearm offenses, announced U.S. Attorney Matthew Schneider.
Joining Schneider in the announcement were Timothy Plancon, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Detroit Field Office of DEA; Jeffrey E. Peterson, Acting Special Agent-in-Charge of the Detroit Field Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation; James Craig, Chief of Detroit Police Department and Thomas Deasy of the Michigan State Police.
The indictment charges Michael DeAngelo Griffin, 34, of Birmingham, Alabama; Clifton Dennis Epps, 30, of Amory, Mississippi; and Mariano Lozoya Garcia, 47, of Brownsville, Texas with interstate travel with intent to kill, injure or harass; interstate travel in aid of unlawful activity; heroin and cocaine distribution; and firearm offenses relating to the murders of Robert James Eddins IV and Ricardo Denard McFarlin, both of Detroit, on December 20, 2016. While aiding and abetting each other, it is alleged that defendants traveled from Birmingham, Alabama to Detroit, Michigan with the intent to harm Robert James Eddins IV, and in the course of carrying out that purpose, Robert Eddins IV and Ricardo McFarlin were killed with a firearm. Eddins was a former member of the Buffalo Bills
United States Attorney Matthew Schneider said, “Combatting the scourge of drug trafficking and the violence that comes with it is a major priority of the metro Detroit law enforcement community. The collaborative efforts and excellent work of DPD, FBI, MSP, and DEA have culminated in this indictment today. We hope to bring justice for the families of the deceased men and dismantle all organizations that spread these deadly poisons in our neighborhoods.”
“The murders of Eddin and McFarlin is just another example of how violence is intertwined with drug trafficking,” stated Special Agent Plancon. “The DEA will continue to target violent offenders in an effort to make our communities safer and drug free.”
“The FBI is at its best when working in concert with our local, state, and federal law enforcement partners,” said Jeffery E. Peterson, Acting Special Agent in Charge, Detroit Division of the FBI. “As reflected in this investigation and the indictment unsealed today, the collective efforts of Detroit’s law enforcement community to combat organized drug trafficking, and the heinous crimes associated with it, is a top priority for our men and women of law enforcement. This investigation reflects our daily dedication and hard work to bring justice to the violent offenders who wreak havoc on our neighborhoods and to protect the residents of southeast Michigan.”
We have learned in law enforcement that crime has no boundaries.” stated Capt. Thomas Deasy, Michigan State Police, Second District Commander. “It is through working with our local and federal partners that we are able to take violent criminals off the street and protect not only the citizens of Michigan, but across the county.”
This case was investigated by agents and officers of the Detroit Police Department’s Homicide Task Force which consists of Special Agents and law enforcement officers with the Detroit Police Department; FBI Detroit, DEA Detroit; and the Michigan State Police. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Rajesh Prasad and Dawn N. Ison.
An Indictment is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt. A defendant is entitled to a fair trial in which it will be the government’s burden to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.