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Arrests made in Suni Bell homicide case


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Tampa Police and Hillsborough State Attorney’s Office announce indictment and arrests in the murder of Suni Bell

TAMPA, FL (September 30, 2021) – Today, a Hillsborough County grand jury returned an indictment charging five individuals in connection with the August 22nd death of four-year-old Suni Bell. All five have been taken into custody by the U.S. Marshals Florida Regional Fugitive Task Force.

Diligent work by Tampa Police patrol officers and homicide detectives created several breaks in the case, leading to Hillsborough State Attorney’s Office prosecutors presenting an indictment to the grand jury.

Indicted are Zvante Sampson, 30 years old; Quandarious Hammond, 28 years old; Jaylin Bedward, 22 years old; James Denson, 24 years old; and Andrew Thompson, 22 years old.

The indictment accuses all five individuals of the felonies of first-degree murder for killing Bell, attempted first-degree murder on a different victim in the same case, conspiracy to commit murder, and shooting into a vehicle.

Additionally, the indictment accuses Hammond and Sampson of attempted murder on a third victim in the case; as well as Hammond, Thompson, and Denson of discharging a firearm from a vehicle in public.

An indictment is a formal accusation against a person suspected of a crime. It is approved (typically phrased as “returned” or “handed down”) following consideration of the evidence by an impartial group of Hillsborough County residents serving on the grand jury.

Today’s indictment represents a significant step forward in the effort to hold Suni’s killers accountable and deliver justice for her and her family. Tampa Police and the Hillsborough State Attorney’s Office will continue their work to identify and prosecute everyone involved. This remains an ongoing, active criminal investigation; neither agency is able to provide further details at this time.

Detectives believe others may have been involved in this case and continue to ask the public for help. Anyone with information is asked to contact CrimeStoppers of Tampa Bay at 1.800.873.TIPS.