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Olympian Simone Biles’ active duty Army brother charged in triple murder

Tevin Biles-Thomas. (Liberty County Sheriff’s Office/Released)
August 30, 2019

Tevin Biles-Thomas, brother of Olympic gymnast Simone Biles, was charged Thursday in connection to a New Year’s Eve shooting in Cleveland, Ohio that killed three and injured two more.

Biles-Thomas, 24, who is in the Army on active duty, was arrested at Fort Stewart, Ga., on six counts of murder, three counts of manslaughter, five counts of felony assault and a count for perjury, according to arresting documents reported by USA Today on Friday.

The arrest follows nearly 8 months of investigation by the Cleveland Division of Police.

“The investigators within the Cleveland Police Homicide Unit remained committed to securing an arrest in this tragic case,” Cleveland Division of Police Chief Calvin Williams said.

The New Year’s Eve shooting took place at an Airbnb rental. At the time, witnesses described an uninvited group arriving at the house. The shooting followed an altercation at the property between the uninvited group and the invited guests.

Following the shooting, Cleveland police pronounced DelVaunte Johnson, 19 and Toshon Banks, 21 dead on the scene. The third victim, Devaughn Gibson, 23, died later in the hospital.

A joint statement between the Cleveland Division of Police and the office of Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Michael O’Malley commended the police actions that resulted in Biles-Thomas’ arrest.

“The relentless persistence of Cleveland Police Homicide detectives helped secure an indictment in this case,” O’Malley said. “It is through their hard work that we can begin to seek justice for these victims.”

Biles-Thomas is currently being held at Liberty County Jail in Hinesville, Georgia. He is scheduled for a Sept. 13 arraignment in Cleveland but it is not yet clear when he will be brought back to Ohio.

Parts of the case are still under investigation, according to the statement between the O’Malley and the Cleveland police.

Simone Biles has not yet offered comment on her brother’s arrest, though a Thursday night tweet may allude to her reaction to the news.

The gymnast did not grow up with Biles-Thomas. She was three-years-old when she, Biles-Thomas and two other siblings were placed in foster care, separating them from their biological mother’s drug and alcohol abuse.

When she was six, Biles and Adria, her younger sister, were adopted by Ron Biles, their maternal grandfather, and his wife Nellie Biles.

Simone Biles took gold medals in the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, for team, all-around, vault, and floor excercise, as well as a bronze medal on the balance beam.

She is due to return to the 2020 Olympics in Toyko, Japan.