On the day after his probation GPS monitor was removed, Dech Gach was picked up from Sioux City, Iowa, by a fellow gang member and went to Omaha to shoot people, an Omaha police detective testified Monday.
After driving around Omaha for a few hours, they picked someone — 59-year-old Larry Thompson, who was sitting on the porch of his North Omaha home.
Omaha Police Detective Brandon Hahn testified Monday that Thompson was approached by the three gang members and Gach shot Thompson seven times.
Gach, 16, of Omaha, has been charged as an adult and will stand trial on charges of first-degree murder, criminal conspiracy and use of a firearm to commit a felony.
Thompson was fatally shot about 8:15 p.m. March 12, 2021, outside his apartment near 28th Avenue and Spencer Street.
Investigators watched video surveillance from the Omaha Housing Authority and saw a black Chevrolet Cruze drive through the Spencer West neighborhood. The car parked, three people got out and ran to Thompson. Thompson then was shot and the three left.
Video showed that the car had driven through the area a total of three times, Hahn said. Detectives determined that the owners of the vehicle were the parents of Christopher Trejo.
Trejo, 17, pleaded guilty to attempted first-degree murder in September and is awaiting sentencing. In exchange for the plea, prosecutors dropped two other felony charges.
According to data on Trejo’s phone, Hahn said, Trejo had been messaging Gach in the days leading up to the shooting, coordinating when Trejo could pick Gach up in Sioux City. Gach had said that his GPS monitor was going to be removed, so he would be able to travel to Omaha “to go shoot people,” Hahn testified.
The two teens chatted about which guns they planned to use, whether they should use a stolen car and their plan to turn off their cellphones just before the shooting, Hahn said.
The two had used their cellphones in the hours prior. After Trejo picked up Gach and Gatluak Jiel at a Family Dollar store in Sioux City, they headed to a gas station, where they filmed a video in which they flashed gang signs, Hahn said. Jiel, now 16, is awaiting trial on charges of first-degree murder, use of a weapon to commit a felony and criminal conspiracy. His public defender has filed a motion to transfer the case to juvenile court.
The car returned to Omaha about 5:30 p.m. and headed to Spencer West housing.
Thompson’s daughter, Shelrina Thompson of Kansas City, has questioned why anyone would want to shoot her father.
“I’m not sure what’s going on in the world today,” she told The World-Herald in June 2021. “There are kids driving around just randomly looking to shoot people.”
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