MARYLAND

911 caller alerts PGPD to triple homicide in Capitol Heights

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CAPITOL HEIGHTS, Md. (WJLA) - Prince George's County Police are investigating the worst homicide scene, in terms of death toll, since Aug. 2010.

PGPD District III Commander on scene of triple homicide in Capitol Heights. Photo: PGPD

Around 5:30 p.m. Saturday, an individual called 911 upon finding three bodies in an apartment in the 5200 block of Marlboro Pike in Capitol Heights.

Patrol officers responded to the unit, at the Lexington Court Apartment Homes, and located three adults lying dead. Names, ages and genders have not been released.

"All I can tell you is he was a good person, a good father, a good son, happy, joyous in general," Iris Mattox, who identified herself as the aunt of a male victim, told ABC7.

A sea of squad cars and yellow police tape blocked pedestrian and vehicle traffic in the community, which heralds itself on its leasing website as, "the best apartment community in Capitol Heights."

"It's just a reality that it can happen anywhere. People live in a bubble where they don't think it can happen to them, but it does," Lexington Court resident Jeanette Carraway said.

Last summer, burglars broke into Carraway's apartment, less than one month after she moved in. "Crime does happen here," she contended, "but nothing like this."

For hours Saturday, homicide and intelligence detectives trudged through the dark, going door-to-door looking for eyewitnesses, hoping to ID a suspect(s), in addition to determining a motive in the triple slaying.

While detectives worked the streets, crime scene technicians processed the apartment from top-to-bottom. Police spokeswoman Julie Parker said beyond conventional tools, investigators were utilizing the department's new 3D imaging scanner. The high-tech device provides police, and potentially a jury, with a 360-degree view of a crime scene, in-effect, bringing it back to life weeks, months, even years later.

"This is a highly unusual crime. You can tell by the amount of resources we have out here, we're working diligently to get this solved," Parker said.

Based-on memory, police told ABC7, Saturday's killings were the worst since an Aug. 2010 quadruple homicide. It was a hot summer day, when Darrell Bellard, 46, and Tkeisha Gilmer, 18, allegedly killed two women and two young children. It happened in a trash-filled detached Riverdale garage, turned makeshift apartment. Police say the woman, and their three and four-year-olds, were killed "execution-style" during a drug deal gone terribly wrong.

Now tasked with yet another large-scale homicide, detectives will return to the Lexington Court Apartment Homes Sunday to pass out Crime Solvers flyers, and talk with more residents.

"Very often in a case like this, it's a citizens tip, a call into Crime Solvers. Information that may or may not seem big or small to them, but in a time like this when we are working against the clock, it's very valuable," Parker added.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Prince George's County Police Department's Homicide Unit at 301-772-4925. Callers wishing to remain anonymous may call Crime Solvers at 1-866-411-TIPS (8477), text "PGPD plus your message" to CRIMES (274637) on your cell phone, or go to www.pgcrimesolvers.com and submit a tip online. A reward of up to $25,000 is offered to anyone who provides information leading to an arrest and indictment in this case.

 

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