Public Safety

Complaint shows Tarrence Newman was killed for money and drugs

Bond for suspected killer Rayshaun Dion Friend set at $2 million

Rayshaun Friend, 29, of Cedar Rapids listens to Judge Nicholas Scott with Tyler Johnston, Assistant Public Defender, while making his initial appearance via video in Linn County District Court in Cedar Rapids on Friday, July 6, 2018. Friend is charged with first-degree murder, first-degree robbery and going armed with intent in connection with the November 12, 2017, death of Tarrence Newman, 40, of Cedar Rapids. (Hannah Schroeder/The Gazette)
Rayshaun Friend, 29, of Cedar Rapids listens to Judge Nicholas Scott with Tyler Johnston, Assistant Public Defender, while making his initial appearance via video in Linn County District Court in Cedar Rapids on Friday, July 6, 2018. Friend is charged with first-degree murder, first-degree robbery and going armed with intent in connection with the November 12, 2017, death of Tarrence Newman, 40, of Cedar Rapids. (Hannah Schroeder/The Gazette)
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Authorities believe 40-year-old Tarrence Newman, of Cedar Rapids, was killed for money and drugs, according to a criminal complaint filed by the Linn County Attorney’s Office.

The complaint states suspect Rayshaun Dion Friend, 29, of Cedar Rapids, “made arrangements” with a second unidentified suspect, “to go to Mr. Newman’s home,” on the night of Nov. 12, 2017, “to steal money and drugs.”

During the robbery, the document states “Tarrence Newman was shot by a handgun” and killed. The complaint indicates a second suspect — not identified in the records made public Friday — may have been the shooter.

The second suspect has not been arrested and police said the investigation is ongoing.

“We are unable to comment on the ongoing investigation at this time,” said Cedar Rapids Public Safety Spokesperson Greg Buelow. “The Police Department is committed to holding any suspects involved in the homicide accountable.”

Police responded to Newman’s residence at about 9:45 p.m. that night after a caller reported a disturbance. When they arrived, officers found Newman dead on the front porch.

The autopsy showed Newman “suffered at least one gunshot wound,” according to the Cedar Rapids Police Department.

A witness allegedly identified Friend as a participant in the robbery, the complaint states.

After nearly eight months of investigation, Friend was arrested Thursday and booked into Linn County Jail.

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He made his initial appearance in Linn County District Court Friday morning on charges of first-degree murder, first-degree robbery and going armed with intent. Sixth Judicial District Associate Judge Nicholas Scott appointed a public defender to Friend’s case and set his bail at $2 million cash or surety.

If convicted of first-degree murder, Friend faces life in prison without parole.

n Comments: (319) 398-8238; kat.russell@thegazette.com

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