TULSA - A judge issued a bond Monday of almost $10 million each for two men suspected of gunning down five black pedestrians Friday in north Tulsa.
Nineteen-year-old Jake England and 32-year-old Alvin Watts were arrested just after 1 a.m. Sunday at their Turley home.
Tulsa County District Attorney Tim Harris spoke to reporters outside of the courtroom, saying "this is the highest priority for the Tulsa County District Attorney's Office."
England and Watts appeared via video conference Monday in front of a judge. Neither man said a word.
The judge explained that the two men could each be charged with three counts of first-degree murder, two counts of shooting with intent to kill and one count of possession of a firearm in commission of a felony.
Dannaer Fields, 49, Bobby Clark, 54, and William Allen, 31, were shot and killed within a three mile radius in north Tulsa early Friday morning.
Two other men were also shot in the area. One of the victims remains hospitalized.
Investigators believe all five victims were targeted at random.
The two suspects were arrested within 24 hours of the formation of "Operation Random Shooter," a task force consisting of about 30 investigators and officers from the Tulsa Police Department, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the U.S . Marshal's Office.
Officers say they received several Crime Stoppers tips naming England as a suspect in the shootings. While police were attempting to locate England, more tips stated that England was in possession of the truck and that he planned on burning the vehicle.
Around 6 p.m. Saturday, Osage County deputies located a burned vehicle in the 6000 block of North Osage Drive. The tag was traced to Carl or Jacob England.
Although police have not confirmed a motive, the shootings occurred almost two years to the day that England's father was killed.
Forty-seven-year-old Carl England was shot and killed during an argument at the Comanche Park Apartments in April 2010. The alleged gunman was Pernell Johnson, a 38-year-old black man.
The NAACP has questioned whether Friday's shootings were a hate crime, but Harris says if those charges are added, from the prosecutor's angle, it won't make a difference.
"It's just one more aspect, one more charge and one more piece of evidence that has to be determined whether the elements of a hate crime can be weeded out and be supported by the evidence beyond a reasonable doubt," Harris said.
U.S. Attorney Thomas Scott Woodward says the investigation will determine whether federal charges are filed.
"The United States Attorney's Office is evaluating possible federal charges, and working with state, local and federal law enforcement will continue to support the ongoing state investigation and prosecution in any way we can.," said Woodward.
England and Watts are being held on $3 million bond for each murder, $75,000 for each shooting with intent to kill and $10,000 each for possession of a firearm in commission of a felony, totaling a bond of $9,160,000 each.
They're due back in court April 16 for their formal arraignment.
Meanwhile, Tulsa police say the investigation is ongoing.
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