Sheriff: Dog-fighting and drug trafficking investigation led to arrest in Merritt Island murder

Chilling images were released by the Brevard County Sheriff's Office this week as part of a homicide investigation.

Investigators said a group disguised as law enforcement officers targeted a Merritt Island home, breaks in, and kills a man and his dog inside.

Police on Wednesday arrested David Foreman-Taylor, of Cocoa,  for his alleged role in a deadly robbery that led to the death of Matthew Nicole.

Brevard County Sheriff Wayne Ivey said the group that went to the home dressed up as police officers were going after drugs. The sheriff said they tracked down some of the suspects from information on their U-Haul van, crime scene evidence, and witness interviews.

"When you have somebody doing something like this it certainly puts everybody ill at ease. But I can tell you, we don't pull up in a U-Haul van. When you see all of this when it is finally put out, you will see the difference in what things happened," said Ivey.

But this is just one part of the web of crimes unraveling in Central Florida. Investigators said it all started as an animal rescue last year. In August of 2020, the Brevard County Sheriff's Office rescued a badly hurt dog that was being used in an alleged dog-fighting ring.

Detectives said that case led them to an investigation into a suspected drug trafficking organization, and then, to the murder in Merritt Island.

"Really, it is kind of a stair step from one investigation to another investigation that solved this case," Ivey said.

The sheriff said the investigation is still ongoing and more arrests will happen in the near future.