Third suspect sought in drug deal-turned-robbery-turned murder, say Largo police

Two suspects, ages 20 and 17, have already been arrested in a fatal shooting this past weekend. The third suspect is considered armed and dangerous.
Published July 10
Updated July 11

LARGO — Two of three suspects have been arrested on charges that they orchestrated a drug deal to rob a man this weekend, then ended up fatally shooting him in the back, according to Largo police.

Police are still searching for the third suspect: 20-year-old Ryan Elliott. He also goes by “Hundo Rich” and is considered armed and dangerous.

The two now in custody were identified as Gavin Griffin, 18, and a 17-year-old juvenile whose name was not released by police. Griffin was arrested Tuesday but police did not say when the juvenile was arrested.

The shooting took place at about 10 p.m. Sunday, police said. A 22-year-old man was found with a gunshot wound and pronounced dead in a parking lot at Autumn Chase Apartments at 2200 Gladys St. His family asked police not to release his name. He did not live at the complex.

Griffin’s arrest report reveals what investigators believe happened: He was one of three men who arranged a “narcotics transaction” — which was actually a ruse to rob their 22-year-old target.

It was Griffin who lured the target in under the pretense that they were going to buy marijuana from him, police said, by making him feel “comfortable” about the meeting. When the man arrived, police said the three suspects approached him.

Griffin was about an arm’s length away when one of the other two suspects pulled out a gun and shot the 22-year-old twice, Largo police said. The shooter was not named by police. All three were seen running from the scene, police said.

Griffin was arrested under Florida’s felony murder statute, under which a person can face a murder charge if the person takes part in a crime that leads to someone’s death. It was his fifth arrest this year, as he also faces four counts of burglary, one count of resisting an officer without violence and one count of possession of THC oil from previous arrests, according to jail records.

He was being held in the Pinellas County jail on Thursday without bail. Police did not say where the juvenile was being held.

Anyone with information about this case is asked to call Largo police at (727) 587-6730.