Island Boys Home Raided and Child Murder Suspect Arrested
14 July 2022
This article has been updated with new information.
A suspect in the murder of an 8-year-old girl was arrested at the Island Boys' home.
According to TMZ, the Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office confirmed a SWAT team raided Alex and Franky Venegas' Florida rental home back in February 2022. The search led to the arrest of the Island Boys' childhood friend, Andrew James Thomas, who was taken into custody in connection to Ronziyah Atkins's death. Authorities said they believed the girl, who was playing near her front porch earlier that day, was caught in the crosshairs of a drive-by shooting when she was fatally shot by Thomas.
Neither of TikTokers were arrested during the raid. However, the outlet reported that Alex was on the premises when the search warrant was executed and told police that Thomas had run towards him with a handgun, which also had an extended magazine attachment.
The social media star went on to claim that he refused Thomas's request to hide the weapon when SWAT arrived. As a result, he said Thomas went to the laundry room, where the gun was later found in a closet. Authorities arrested Thomas on charges of gun possession, violation of probation related to a separate robbery and first-degree murder.
Speaking to TMZ, the Island Boys' manager insisted no one knew about the drive-by shooting, saying they only knew Thomas as "a quiet kid and he would come and hang out and do his thing and go back to whatever he got going on."
The manager added, "But we had no clue about any of these allegations toward him."
CBS 12 News reports that Thomas is currently facing one count of first-degree murder and 13 counts of attempted first-degree murder with a firearm. He could possibly receive the death penalty if convicted.
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