MEMPHIS, Tenn. - A man at the center of a Christmas crime spree is the same suspect who was arrested after a massive manhunt this fall, according to Memphis police.
Ray Burns, 36, is charged with carjacking, robbery, evading arrest, and other crimes, after a crime spree and police chase ended when Burns crashed a stolen car in Cordova on Christmas Day.
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Victims and their neighbors and family told FOX13 they don’t understand why the suspected carjacker was free to terrorize more people in December, about two months after his arrest in Midtown.
On October 13, the suspected carjacker wrecked a stolen car at East Parkway across from Tiger Lane, and then ran from police, according to the arrest affidavit.
With a police helicopter overhead, dozens of officers swarmed a home on Bruce Street a block from the crash scene, where police said they found Burns hiding in a driveway.
The 36-year-old was charged with robbery, burglary, carjacking, evading arrest and other charges on October 13, following another days-long crime-spree.
Sources with knowledge of the investigation told FOX13 the charges from October were “dismissed for lack of prosecution,” allowing for Burns’ release from jail.
FOX13 reached out to a spokesperson for the District Attorney’s office Tuesday afternoon, asking for additional details regarding the court’s dismissal. The spokesperson had not responded as of Tuesday night.
Lacey Lewis told FOX13 her roommate, Johnathan Holden, was one of Burns’ victims in December.
“He should have still been in jail,” Lewis said. “Hopefully police will find substantial evidence to keep these guys behind bars, rather than letting them back to run another crime spree.”
According to court records, Burns held a gun to Holden’s head and demanded money on Christmas Eve. The robbery happened in Holden’s driveway on Prescott Street.
Police developed Burns as a suspect for the robbery, in addition to several other crimes the week before Christmas.
On Christmas Day, police said Burns stole a car with a child inside from a gas station on Barron Avenue in Orange Mound. He carjacked a second driver in Arlington, briefly kidnapping an adult. Finally, in familiar fashion, police said Burns led them on a pursuit through Cordova, where crashed a third stolen car.
The suspected carjacker was arrested close to the scene of the crash in Cordova. Burns was in jail Tuesday night with a $500,000 bond.
Burns was sentenced to eight years in prison in 2011, after he was convicted of a 2010 carjacking. It wasn’t immediately clear why he was released before the end of his sentence.
More recently, the 36-year-old has been charged with several other crimes, including a theft in June 2017. According to Shelby County Records, that charge was also “dismissed for lack of prosecution.”
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