Crime & Courts

Gang member arrested in weekend shooting deaths, police say

Crime scene investigators processes a scene at the Place, 4859 E. Harry. Two people have been confirmed dead and two others wounded after a shooting over night shooting at the bar. (Jan. 10, 2015)
Crime scene investigators processes a scene at the Place, 4859 E. Harry. Two people have been confirmed dead and two others wounded after a shooting over night shooting at the bar. (Jan. 10, 2015) The Wichita Eagle

A 29-year-old man has been arrested in connection with a weekend shooting incident that killed two people and wounded two others, records show.

Ishmael Bryant was arrested shortly after 2:30 p.m. on Monday at 844 N. Grove, arrest records show.

“He was taken into custody without incident,” homicide Lt. Todd Ojile said.

Bryant was booked into the Sedgwick County Jail on suspicion of two counts of second-degree murder, two counts of aggravated battery and one count of criminal possession of a firearm.

A Crime Stoppers tip received via text message led to Bryant’s arrest, said Gordon Bassham, executive director of the Wichita Crime Commission. Crime Stoppers is a division of the crime commission.

Bryant is accused of killing Andrew Smith, 28, and Quentin Brown, 32, in the parking lot of the Place bar and grill at 4859 E. Harry shortly after 1:30 a.m. on Saturday.

Brown and a 36-year-old man got into an argument with Bryant inside the club, police have said, and the dispute continued outside. Bryant is accused of pulling out a gun and shooting Brown and the 36-year-old man.

It’s still not clear what prompted the argument, Ojile said. All three men involved in the argument are documented gang members, he said, with Bryant in a different gang than the other two.

Smith, who was a bystander, was struck by three shots as he was leaving the bar, Ojile said. He was pronounced dead at 2:26 a.m. on Saturday at Wesley Medical Center. Brown was shot once in the chest and died at Wesley at 5:44 a.m.

A 25-year-old bystander was hit in the leg by a stray bullet and was treated at Via Christi Hospital St. Francis before being released, police have said. The 36-year-old man was shot in the abdomen and was released Monday from a local hospital, Ojile said.

Police have said only one person fired shots, but they are still hoping to talk to more people.

“We’re still looking for any witnesses,” Ojile said. “We know there’s people out there we want to talk to.”

Investigators have not recovered the gun used in the shooting incident.

Bassham said the tip gave police Bryant’s name and an address where he could be found. Officers arrested Bryant two hours after the the tip came in.

Officers were sent to a few potential addresses where Bryant could be found, Ojile said.

Bryant has a prior criminal history that includes pleading guilty to drug possession and criminal threat, Sedgwick County District Court records show.

Evidence in the fatal shootings case will be presented Thursday morning to the Sedgwick County District Attorney’s Office, said Dan Dillon, a spokesman for the district attorney’s office.

Reach Stan Finger at 316-268-6437 or sfinger@wichitaeagle.com. Follow him on Twitter: @StanFinger.

Related stories from Wichita Eagle

  Comments