UPDATE: Two Murder Suspects In Court

By: Phil Levin Email
By: Phil Levin Email

UPDATED Monday, July 16, 2012 --- 4:47 p.m.

Two suspects in a Fitchburg murder case appeared in court today. 21-year-old Daniel Owens of Madison, and 32-year-old Roberto Poindexter of Fitchburg, had their initial appearances. Owens is charged with first degree intentional homicide and armed robbery. Poindexter is charged with felony murder.

The third suspect, Bobby Hogans, appeared in court July 3rd.

The criminal complaint says the murder victim, Sam Harris, and his friend, Matthew LaValle drove to Madison to buy drugs. Harris told LaValle he was "going to take over the game," by which he meant he was going to become a bigger drug dealer to make more money.

Harris was a drug dealer operating in the Dubuque area. He sold cocaine and marijuana. He was meeting Bobby Hogans to arrange to buy some cocaine.

During interviews, Bobby Hogans admitted to investigators he met Harris the week before and that they did drugs together, and originally said he was trying to be the middle man in a deal between Harris and Daniel Owens. Later Hogans admitted he and his partners planned on robbing Harris because they knew he had $2600. Hogans said he never expected anyone would be shot. He met both Harris and LaValle in Harris's vehicle, and directed them to the apartment on Leopold Way in Fitchburg. LaValle waited in the car while Harris and Hogans went into the north entrance of the building, where they met with Owens, who was supposed to be supplying the drugs. Hogans tried to take away Harris's gun, and during the struggle, Owens shot Harris.

The complaint says Roberto Poindexter was also involved in the attempted robbery-turned-murder. Hogans told investigators Poindexter was in on the plot to take Harris's money, and that he drove the getaway car.


UPDATED Thursday, July 5, 2012 --- 11:02 a.m.

From Fitchburg Police: The family of Samuel Harris has offered this segment from Sam's obituary to give the community a better sense of their Sam.

Sam was born November 20, 1986 in Dubuque, the son of Bob and Diane (Wolfe) Harris. He graduated from Hempstead High School in 2005. Sam later joined the U.S. Marine Corp. and recent received his honorable discharge after 5 years of service to his country.

Sam enjoyed life, and "lived the dream", living life every day to the fullest. He was an experienced hunter, loved to fish and ride motorcycles. He thoroughly enjoyed time spent with family and friends. Even in death, he was able to help others by becoming an organ and tissue donor. Sam was very social person and dearly loved his many friends.


UPDATED: Wednesday, July 4, 2012 --- 3:50 p.m.

FITCHBURG, Wis. (AP) -- An Iowa man shot and killed last week in a Madison suburb was apparently the victim of a drug deal that went bad.

Documents filed in Dane County Circuit Court say 25-year-old Samuel Harris of Dubuque traveled to a Fitchburg apartment to buy cocaine last week and sell a handgun.

The documents say Harris, a former marine, ended up dead of a gunshot wound after he was the target of a robbery during the deal.

Three people have been arrested in connection with the shooting, including 22-year-old Bobby Hogans of Madison, who faces charges of felony murder and armed robbery.

The Dubuque Telegraph Herald says Hogans pleaded not guilty Tuesday. The complaint says Hogans told detectives another man shot Harris while Hogans and Harris were wrestling over his gun.

Copyright 2012: Associated Press


UPDATED Monday, July 2, 2012 --- 6:00 p.m.

NOTE: To read the Probable Cause Affidavit, click on the link ABOVE.

As police investigate the murder of 25-year-old Samuel Harris, we are learning new information from the Probable Cause Affidavit.

Bobby Hogans is one of three suspects. According to the Probable Cause Affidavit, he admitted he set-up a robbery with the victim at 3302 Leopold Way. He told investigators he was armed with a handgun and took $2600 from his pocket after Harris was shot.

Hogans claims Daniel Owens pulled out a weapon and pointed it at the victim. That is when he heard a gunshot. Hogans said the victim fell to the ground and appeared to be unconscious.

Roberto Poindexter and Daniel Owens, both arrested in Fitchburg, are in custody on charges unrelated to the murder.


UPDATED Friday, June 29, 2012 --- 4:15 p.m.

Fitchburg Police indicate the three suspects in jail for Tuesday night's homicide are the only men they expect to arrest, although their investigation continues.

Bobby Hogans remains in jail, unable to post $250,000 bail. Roberto Poindexter and Daniel Owens, both arrested in Fitchburg, are in custody on charges unrelated to the murder. Police will recommend the District Attorney charge them with felony murder and armed robbery for their alleged involvement in the incident Tuesday, the same charges Hogans faces.

Police are withholding photos of Poindexter and Owens, as well as which of the three men they suspect was the gunman


UPDATED Friday, June 29, 2012 --- 3:45 p.m.

From the Fitchburg Police Department:

The Fitchburg Police Department continues to make progress in the ongoing investigation into the homicide at 3302 Leopold Way on June 26, 2012. Three subjects have been taken into custody as a result of this investigation. The three subjects are identified as:

Bobby G. Hogans, age 21, of Madison
Hogans was booked into the Dane County Jail on June 28, 2012 on a tentative charge of Felony Murder and Armed Robbery.

Roberto F. Poindexter, age 32, of Fitchburg
Poindexter was booked into the Dane County Jail on June 28, 2012 on a probation violation.

Daniel M. Owens, age 21, No Permanent Address
Owens was booked into the Dane County Jail on June 29, 2012 on a warrant issued by the Illinois Department of Corrections.

At this time, the Police Department does not anticipate additional arrests regarding this incident.


UPDATED Thursday, June 28, 2012 --- 4:55 p.m.
Posted By: Barclay Pollak

Police say Bobby G. Hogans was taken into custody sometime between 7:30 and 8 o'clock Wednesday night in Madison. Police gave very little information about the suspect and at this time they are not releasing his photo.

According to court documents Hogans has been in trouble with the law before but not for anything major. According to those same court documents he lists a Chicago address as his home.

Hogans is tentatively charged with Felony Murder and Armed Robbery. Police also say a second suspect is being held on a probation violation.

Fitchburg Police Chief Thomas Blatter says, " The subject is a person of interest related to the investigation and their name is not being released at this time. Images of the suspect are not being released at this time due to the continuing investigation. "

Police say the suspects knew the victim and arranged a meeting with Samuel Harris of Dubuque, Iowa. They also believe their intent was to rob the 25-year-old but they don't know if they planned to kill him.

None of the people involved had any connection with the apartment building where the body was found.

Chief Blatter says, " The location was in part selected by the suspect due to the lack of ties to the area by those involved. "

Police still won't say what Harris was doing in the Madison area at this point.


UPDATED Thursday, June 28, 2012 --- 2:25 p.m.

From NBC15's Barclay Pollak:

The name of the suspect arrested in the Fitchburg homicide is Bobby G. Hogans.

There is a second suspect in custody, but he has not been charged in relation to this crime at this time.

The people involved in the incident knew each other. Police won't say why the victim, Samuel John Harris of Iowa, was in Madison.

Police say the investigation of this crime will require months of work.


UPDATED Thursday, June 28, 2012 --- 11:49 a.m.

Fitchburg Police will be hold a news conference at 1:30 this afternoon on the latest developments in this homicide investigation.


UPDATED Thursday, June 28, 2012 --- 7:10 a.m.

Breaking News this morning: There has been an arrest in the Fitchburg homicide (that occurred Tuesday).

Here is the press release from the Fitchburg Police Department:

There has been an overnight arrest made in the ongoing investigation into the homicide that took place at 3302 Leopold Way on June 26, 2012.

A formal announcement regarding the developments in the investigation will take place later today. The time and location of this announcement will be forthcoming.


UPDATED Wednesday, June 27, 2012 --- 5:15 p.m.
By: Barclay Pollak

The streets around 3302 Leopold Way were quiet today with the exception of the occasional family or child running up and down the sidewalk and that's how neighbors say things are normally. They believe yesterday was truly and exception.

Adelinda Lopez lives in the apartment building where the body was found. Normally Lopez, who's lived in her Fitchburg apartment for a year, would leave her patio door open until late at night. After yesterday's homicide Lopez says she's going to keep it shut.

Devonte Lawrence wasn't home when the body of 25-year-old Samuel John Harris was found and the investigation began. But his son was. Lawrence says he's glad his son is safe.

" It's still a lot to witness. A lot to be around. It has a lot of people around that usually aren't around now. "

Today there was still a strong police presence in the area. Two officers were stationed near one of the exits of the building. In a press release the Fitchburg Police Department said residence can expect to see more squads and officers in the area in the coming days.

Natalie Morse-Noland has lived at 3302 for two years. Other than the occasional leaky faucet she says she's never had any real problems.

Morse-Noland and another resident we spoke with, who didn't want to go on camera, say they heard a loud, strange noise yesterday afternoon. But they quickly dismissed it.

Morse-Noland says, " Having hindsight I did hear a loud noise before they showed up. But, I thought it was just maintenance people dropping something heavy because they've been working on the grounds for the last couple of days. "

Most of the neighbors we spoke with today say they were concerned about yesterday's incident but that doesn't mean they're frightened and they say they're not planning on leaving.


UPDATED Wednesday, June 27, 2012 --- 3:19 p.m.

Press Release from the Dane Co. Medical Examiner:

The Dane County Medical Examiner’s Office is releasing the name of the Fitchburg homicide victim. At or about 5:27PM on 06-26-2012 a call for a man down, pulseless, and non-breathing in the 3300 block of Leopold was received. Resuscitative efforts were unsuccessful. The victim was later positively identified as:

Samuel John Harris
Dubuque, IA

A forensic autopsy was completed today at the Medical Examiner’s Office. Preliminary autopsy results indicate that this death is due to firearm related trauma. Additional testing is underway.

This case remains under investigation by the City of Fitchburg Police Department and the Dane County Medical Examiner’s Office.

There will be no further release of information from the Medical Examiner’s Office.


UPDATED Wednesday, June 27, 2012 --- 12:25 p.m.

Press Release from the Fitchburg Police Department:

Fitchburg Police continue to conduct a homicide investigation in regards to the incident at 3302 Leopold Way on June 26, 2012 at approximately 5:30 p.m.

A team of investigators and crime scene technicians have been working extensively on this investigation since last evening.

Leopold Way was re-opened to vehicular traffic at approximately 5:00 a.m. this morning. Police personnel remain on-scene at 3302 Leopold Way while additional scene processing takes place.

Additionally, officers of the Fitchburg Police Department will be providing extra patrol in the neighborhood throughout the coming days.

The investigators working this case continue to follow-up on leads. We continue to partner with the Dane County Sheriff's Office, Madison Police, and Dane County Medical Examiner's Office on this investigation. At this time no other information is available for release.


UPDATED Wednesday, June 27, 2012 --- 6:05 a.m.

FITCHBURG, Wis. (AP) -- Police say a man found dead in the hallway of a Fitchburg apartment building appears to be the victim of a homicide.

Officers were called to the apartment about 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, found the man and took him outside to try to resuscitate him. The man was pronounced dead by the Dane County Medical Examiner's Office.

Lt. Chad Brecklin tells the State Journal (http://bit.ly/L0HfIw ) an autopsy is expected to be done Wednesday. Police have not said how the man died or released his identity.

Copyright 2012. The Associated Press.


UPDATED: Tuesday, June 26, 2012 --- 10:30 p.m.

Fitchburg Police tell NBC 15 that it remains an active homicide investigation.

Police also say Dane County District Attorney Ismael Ozanne is on the scene as they investigate. Fitchburg Police are being assisted by the Dane County Sheriff's office.

Authorities still have not removed the body from the scene, and have placed crime tape on several apartment buildings in the complex, creating a large perimeter.

Hundreds of people from the neighborhood have come to the scene and are gathered around, trying to learn more information. There had been some in the crowd who believed the police were involved, but Fitchburg Police say it is not an officer involved shooting.

Police say an autopsy of the murder victim is scheduled for tomorrow.

They are not releasing any information about a possible suspect at this time.

Investigators tell our teams in the field that it will be an active investigation well into the night.


Posted: Tuesday, June 26, 2012 --- 7:17p.m.

Information from Fitchburg Police Department:

Fitchburg Police are investigating an apparent homicide. Officers responded to a call just after 5:30 this evening at The Fairways Apartments in the 3300 block of Leopold Way.

Hundreds of people have been gathering around the crime scene trying to piece together exactly what happened.

The body still lies directly in front of the building, only steps away from an elementary school.

Police tell NBC15 that the victim was a male. According to Fitchburg dispatch, he was in his 20's.

The suspect is still at large.

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