2 wanted in gas station carjackings arraigned
Detroit — Two men suspected in a string of carjackings at gas stations on the city’s west side were arraigned Friday in federal court.
Andriel McGowan, 21, and Terry Lynn McLemore Jr., 23, were arrested Thursday evening hiding in the trunk of a vehicle trying to flee after they were announced publicly as suspects, Assistant U.S. Attorney John O’Brien said in court.
The carjackings occurred in the areas of Greenfield and McNichols and Greenfield and Schoolcraft, police said. According to court documents, the men are charged in federal court because the vehicles they allegedly stole were manufactured outside of Michigan.
Both men had not guilty pleas entered on their behalf by Judge David Grand. They were temporarily remanded to the Wayne County Jail ahead of hearings early next week to formally decide bond.
McGowan and Mclemore appeared in separate, brief arraignment hearings Friday afternoon, each wearing dark green county jail jumpsuits. They indicated they understood their rights to remain silent and to obtain court-appointed attorneys.
McGowan is due back in court Monday afternoon for a bond hearing, while Mclemore is expected back Tuesday afternoon.
A representative with pretrial services indicated Mclemore is homeless.
Both men face charges stemming from one incident that took place around 11:15 a.m. Sept. 27 at a gas station at 16140 McNichols near Outer Drive and the Southfield Freeway, according to an arrest warrant request filed Oct. 1 and unsealed Friday.
McGowen also faces charges in an earlier incident that occurred around 3:20 a.m. Sept. 25 outside a Valero gas station on the 15400 block of Greenfield near Schoolcraft.
Mclemore also is a suspect in that carjacking, police have said.
In the Sept. 27 incident, McGowan and Mclemore are accused of pointing guns at a male victim who had just returned to his 2008 Chevrolet Impala parked at the gas station, according to the court filing. The suspects ordered the victim out of his vehicle, entered the car and drove away from the scene.
The men are charged with carjacking and using a firearm during a violent crime. If convicted, they face up to 25 years in federal prison.
The incident was captured on surveillance footage released to the public, according to the court document. The Detroit Police Department then received tips identifying both McGowen and Mclemore as suspects.
The victim on Sept. 30 identified both suspects off separate photo arrays prepared and presented by Detroit police officers. His vehicle has not been recovered.
Investigators also were able to determine the suspects are related, although the nature of their relationship is not specified in the filing.
The arrest warrant request against both suspects was filed the day after a Sept. 30 document charging McGowan in the Sept. 25 carjacking outside a Valero gas station. That filing later was sealed in federal court.
In that incident, the suspects allegedly carjacked and shot a 27-year-old man who left his silver 2002 Ford Escape running at a pump while he went inside to purchase juice, police said last month.
The victim identified McGowan as the shooter off a photo array presented by Detroit police and witnessed by FBI agents, officials said in the court filing.
McGowan’s image was added to the photo array after he was identified by tipsters who viewed surveillance footage of the carjacking released to the media.
McGowan and Mclemore were first spotted that morning outside the gas station by an employee prior to the carjacking, store manager Majid Khan said last month. The employee did not allow the men to enter because they were unfamiliar, wore hoodies and she could not see their faces.
The store is locked overnight, with customers admitted at the employee's discretion, Khan said.
Shortly after the two suspects were denied entry, the victim pulled into parking lot, according to the court filing. One of the suspects asked him for money, but he declined and continued into the station.
In surveillance footage from the store, the victim can be seen entering while talking on his cellphone. About 20 seconds later, the suspects jumped into the vehicle and the victim ran back outside. The victim opened the driver’s side door but immediately fell backward when one of the suspects opened fire.
Tipsters identified McGowan from the footage and investigators matched his description to one provided by the victim, officials said. The victim later identified McGowan as the man who shot him multiple times with a handgun before driving away in his vehicle.
The vehicle later was recovered abandoned about a mile from the crime scene at a business on the 14800 block of Schaefer Highway, officials said.
Anyone with further information is asked to contact Detroit police at (313) 596-2555 or Crime Stoppers at 1 (800) SPEAK-UP.