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2 men, 19, shot dead after traveling to Indian River County to sell THC vape pens; teen suspect arrested

Sheriff says victims traveled from Melbourne to sell 1,300 vape pens
Posted at 12:10 PM, Mar 12, 2024
and last updated 2024-03-12 20:53:52-04

VERO BEACH, Fla. — Two 19-year-old men were shot and killed after they traveled from Brevard County to Indian River County to sell about $3,000 worth of THC vape pens, and a 17-year-old boy is now facing murder charges, Sheriff Eric Flowers said Tuesday.

Joseph Cardella, of Melbourne, and Logan Thompson, of Palm Bay, were identified as the victims in Monday afternoon's double shooting in the Vero Lake Estates neighborhood.

Money was found scattered near the victims' bodies, leading detectives to believe the shooting was drug related.

The suspect was later identified as a 17-year-old Fellsmere resident. WPTV is not identifying the suspect because he hasn't been charged as an adult.

WATCH: Sheriff says teens killed during sale of THC vape pens

Indian River County sheriff says 2 teens killed during sale of THC vape pens

"This guy shows up with his gun and, at some point, starts firing off rounds," Flowers said.

Flowers said the witness was then dropped off at home and told his parents what had happened.

"Our witness, when he comes home, he tells his parents, 'Hey, bad stuff happened,'" Flowers said. "They brought him right to the station."

Flowers said the witness led detectives to the gun used in the shooting.

Gun used in fatal shooting of Joseph Cardella and Logan Thompson
This is the gun that Indian River County Sheriff's Office detectives say was used in the fatal shooting of Joseph Cardella and Logan Thompson.

The sheriff said that "many rounds were fired out there," but no weapons were found on the victims or in their vehicle.

Flowers said the suspect claimed he acted in self-defense, "but his story falls apart pretty fast."

"These two guys are dead over vape pens," Flowers said. "It's crazy."