Editor’s note: The NYPD initially misidentified the photo of suspect Jacob Barroso. The story has been updated with the correct photo.
NEW YORK (PIX11) — Jacob Barroso, one of three suspects wanted in connection with several deadly drug-induced robberies near LGBTQ+ clubs in Hell’s Kitchen, was arrested after turning himself in at a downtown Manhattan police precinct early Saturday morning, according to police and law enforcement sources.
Police charged Barroso, 30, with murder, robbery, grand larceny, conspiracy, and identity theft in connection with the death of Brooklyn social worker Julio Ramirez, 25, who was approached by three men when he left The Ritz bar in Hell’s Kitchen in the early hours of April 21, 2022, police said Sunday.
Ramirez, who had a dual Master’s degree from the University of Buffalo, was found dead — alone — in the back of a cab downtown 90 minutes later, according to police. His phone and wallet were missing and his family later discovered $17,000 had been cleaned out of his bank accounts.
When the Ramirez family was told he had died of a potential overdose, they asked detectives to look into foul play, especially since thousands of dollars had been swiped from his accounts.
After another victim — political consultant John Umberger, 33 — was discovered dead on June 1, several days after leaving The Q club in Hell’s Kitchen, NYPD Det. Randy Rose linked his death with what happened to Ramirez. Both men had a lethal cocktail of drugs in their systems, including fentanyl and lidocaine. Umberger had $22,000 taken from his bank accounts by thieves using facial recognition on Umberger’s iPhone.
Police are seeking two other men in connection with the drug induced homicides in Hell’s Kitchen: Jayquan Hamilton and Robert Demaio.
The NYPD recently revealed they are investigating at least two citywide patterns of robberies where thieves are using drugs to steal from their victims. At least seven homicides have been linked to the thefts, including that of prominent fashion designer Katie Gallagher.