Grand jury formally indicts Florida man in family murder
A man charged with the massacre of a Florida family that they were child sex traffickers is officially charged with four counts of first-degree murder.
Court documents show that the 22-count indictment for the grand jury was filed Tuesday in Polk County Court against Brian Riley. Other charges included attempted murder – an 11-year-old girl survived the September 5 revolution and got Riley into a gun battle with police – kidnapping, arson, burglary and animal cruelty to kill the family dog.
Riley, a 33-year-old former Marine, could eventually face the death penalty or life imprisonment if convicted of the murders. Prosecutors have not announced a decision on whether to seek the death penalty.
Riley is being held without bail and has yet to file a petition for the charges against him.
Polk County Sheriff, formerly Grady Judd, said Riley mistakenly believed the family was involved in the child sex trade and that God told him to rescue a child victim named Amber. There was no child with that name in the house.
Judd said Riley ran into the family after he saw a man mowing the lawn with a young girl in the yard he thought might be a trafficking victim.
Officials say Riley, who was wearing body armor, had three guns with him and fired at least 100 shots in the main house and a smaller one in the back where Catherine Delgado, 62, was killed.
Law enforcement officers fired about 60 rounds in a gun battle that left Riley with a bullet wound to the abdomen. Riley then gave up.
The victims are Judge Gleason, 40; his 33-year-old girlfriend Theresa Lanham; their child, Judy, who was born in May; and Delgado, Lanham’s mother who owned the property. Gleeson’s daughter survived despite several gunshot wounds.
Riley served as a Marine in Iraq and Afghanistan and worked as a security guard in the Lakeland area, including at a church. After that last job, his four-year-old girlfriend told detectives that Riley started talking about connecting with God but not about violence.