BRADENTON -- The man charged with shooting two brothers dead on Labor Day during the armed robbery of their family's Palmetto convenience store was indicted by a grand jury Tuesday on first-degree murder charges.
Devin Chandler is charged with two counts of first-degree murder and one count of armed robbery.
If convicted, he could be sentenced to death or life in prison without parole.
Chandler was arrested at a Tampa home by U.S. marshals on Sept. 8.
The ambush of the two brothers was caught on the store's video surveillance, according to Palmetto police.
Khasem Yousef, 23, and his brother, Faares Yousef, 17, were working at Snappy's Mart, 559 17th St. W., Palmetto, when investigators say Chandler walked into the store around 2:30 p.m. Sept. 7, picked up an item and walked to the counter.
Instead of paying, detectives say he reached into his pocket and pulled out a handgun, first killing the older brother standing next to him, and then shooting the younger brother standing behind the counter. Both brothers were shot in the head, police said.
Chandler then jumped on the counter and took cash from the register and cigarettes from a rack before jumping back over and leaving the store, police said.
Police were notified after a customer walked in and found the bodies.
Chandler is being held without bond at the Manatee County jail.
Hassan Shibly -- executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, where the Yousef family are members -- said it came as no surprise when he was notified Chandler had been indicted because of the sheer horrific nature of the crime.
"No indictment will bring
back the sons of the Yousef family that have been wrongfully taken," Shibly said. "That being said, that the suspect faces the fullest extent of the law, and will pay for his crimes upon conviction, sends a strong message that human life is sacred and will deter future criminal acts."
Shibly was in contact with the brothers' parents Wednesday morning regarding the news.
"The family definitely appreciates the interface and cross-cultural support they have received from the community," Shibly said. "They certainly will not allow those crimes to stir fear or create division within the community."
Jessica De Leon, Herald law enforcement reporter, can be reached at 941-745-7049. You can follow her on Twitter @JDeLeon1012.