Lydia Banks holds two high school graduation pictures of her daughter, Allyssa, during a Feb. 1 press conference outside the Prince George’s County Courthouse in Upper Marlboro, where authorities announced three men had been charged with Allyssa's fatal shooting in 2016. (William J. Ford/The Washington Informer)
Lydia Banks holds two high school graduation pictures of her daughter, Allyssa, during a Feb. 1 press conference outside the Prince George’s County Courthouse in Upper Marlboro, where authorities announced three men had been charged with Allyssa's fatal shooting in 2016. (William J. Ford/The Washington Informer)

More than a year after a Prince George’s County teen was murdered in Largo over a gang rivalry, three men were charged Thursday with her death.

Prince George’s County State’s Attorney Angela Alsobrooks said at a press conference in Upper Marlboro that Allyssa Banks, 18, and her boyfriend, who was also shot but survived his injuries, were innocent bystanders.

“They were doing nothing at all except parking a vehicle when they were targeted and murdered in cold blood,” Alsobrooks said while standing alongside Banks’ mother, Lydia Banks.

According to court documents, Banks was helping her boyfriend parallel-park a car on Prince Place on Oct. 19, 2016, when the assailants approached the vehicle, shot them both and fled.

The three men charged — Thomas Demetrius Jenkins, 20, of Riverdale, Daniel Edward Butler, 23, of Bladensburg, and Josue David Vasques, 21, of New Carrollton — are part of the Riverdale Crew that sought retaliation against another gang labeled the Largo Crew, charging documents state.

Each will be charged with murder, attempted murder and other offenses. All three are being held in jail without bond, authorities said.

Alsobrooks said the investigation determined Vasques was the shooter.

According to court documents, Jenkins walked with Vasques toward Banks and her boyfriend and asked,” Where you from?” Vasques then fired multiple times at Banks and her boyfriend. Butler drove the getaway vehicle.

County police Chief Hank Stawinski said the case was challenging because Banks and her boyfriend “were completely innocent victims” and didn’t know the men.

He also had a message for anyone involved in criminal activities.

“My role here today is to tell our community we will not stop,” he said. “[Detective Cleo Savoy and fellow officers] are relentless. We’re going to get you.”

Banks graduated from Largo High School in 2016 and served as student body president. At the time of her death, she was attending Prince George’s Community College to pursue a career as an emergency medical technician.

Lydia Banks, holding two pictures of her daughter, thanked police and Alsobrooks’ office for solving “this heinous crime.”

Coverage for the Washington Informer includes Prince George’s County government, school system and some state of Maryland government. Received an award in 2019 from the D.C. Chapter of the Society of...

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