Authorities looking for more suspects in murder of Reserve couple

Print
Email
|

wwltv.com

Posted on May 8, 2014 at 5:39 PM

Paul Murphy / Eyewitness News
Email: pmurphy@wwltv.com | Twitter: @pmurphywwl

NEW ORLEANS -- Local, state and federal authorities gathered at New Orleans police headquarters to talk about a trail of evidence leading to Brittany Martin, 25 and Horatio Johnson, 37.

They surrendered Wednesday in St. John the Baptist Parish and are now facing two second-degree murder charges in the deaths of Laketha and Kenneth Joseph in Orleans Parish.

The couple from Reserve vanished in February and were found weeks later in the Intracoastal Waterway in New Orleans.

"We obviously believe the victims were dumped there," said NOPD Superintendent Ronal Serpas. "We have not finished the work that would be necessary to understand all the tidal flows and currents and where things might have been moved. Their corpses may have been moved."

Investigators say the Josephs were tied to and weighted down in the water by kettlebells.

Serpas said surveillance video shows Martin purchasing the murder weapons with her American Express card at a Walmart in Kenner. Blood matching both victims was found in a borrowed mini-van that turned up near Atlanta.

Police would not talk about a possible motive.

"Two people were brutally killed," Serpas said. "Two people were killed for reasons that we have information on and we want more information about. Just too early to talk all about the theories of the prosecution or the theories of the investigation."

St. John Sheriff Mike Tregre confirms the suspects had a prior relationship with the Josephs.

"The suspect that we have in custody (Johnson) and Kenneth were friends, associates, and from what I have heard they were business associates, also," said Tregre. "I think they were in some sort of phone business."

Tregre hopes the arrest lead to some closure for the victims family and their community.

"I've always said from the very beginning that this case was solvable," said Tregre. "It's going to be a win for the community, St. John Parish, to know that this couple is going to get justice."

Investigators say there are other potential suspects in this case that may have participated either before, during or after the murders. They are now asking for the public's help in identifying them.

"There are other people we know have reason to believe have information which can lead to further knowledge of this case," said Serpas. "We know more than you think we know and the time has come for you to come forward."

Serpas said suspect Horatio Johnson was previously convicted of manslaughter and was on parole until 2028.

Print
Email
|