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Suspects admit to killing 4, police say

Ruben Castaneda

The man and woman charged with killing two women and two young children in a squalid Lanham home last month will continue to be held without bond, a Prince George's County judge ruled Friday.

The ruling came after a police officer testified that the pair admitted their roles in the slayings.

Following a brief preliminary hearing, District Court Judge John P. Morrissey ruled that Darrell Lynn Bellard, 42, of Dickinson, Tex., and T'keisha Nicole Gilmer, 18, of Texas City, Tex., should remain locked up.

Bellard and Gilmer are each charged with four counts of first-degree murder in connection with a quadruple slaying that occurred early Aug. 6 in a house in the 6800 block of Third Street.

Four victims were shot to death: Mwasiti Sikyala, 41; Dawn Brooks, 38; Shakur Sylvester Sikyala, 4; and Shayla Shante Sikyala, 3.

Brooks was the children's mother, and Mwasiti Sikyala was their paternal aunt, authorities have said. The victims were found in a garage apartment amid piles of trash, police said.

Cpl. Michael Delaney, a county police homicide investigator, testified that patrol officers who responded to a report of a shooting found Bellard and Gilmer at the home. The couple provided detectives with statements admitting they participated in the killings, Delaney testified. Gilmer said in her statement that Bellard shot the victims, Delaney said.

Bellard's statement was videotaped, Delaney said. During Gilmer's statement, the video recording equipment was not functioning, Delaney said.

Delaney said Bellard and Gilmer drove to Maryland from Texas to sell marijuana. In the hours before the shooting, Bellard and Gilmer took Brooks for a drive, the corporal testified.

When they returned, Mwasiti Sikayla said someone had come into the home and stolen the marijuana, Delaney said.

Bellard became upset and began looking around the home for the drugs, Delaney said. When Bellard couldn't find the marijuana, he and Gilmer went to Bellard's truck and each retrieved a handgun, then returned to the home, Delaney said.

Police sources have said that Gilmer is believed to have blocked the escape of the victims while Bellard shot them.

-- Ruben Castaneda

By Ruben Castaneda  |  September 3, 2010; 2:59 PM ET
Categories:  From the Courthouse , Homicide , Pr. George's , Ruben Castaneda  
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There's a lesson for you kids...if you're going to drive from Texas to sell drugs then take someone for a drive be sure to take your drugs with you. It saves you the inconvenience of having to commit 4 murders when you come back to the house only to be told your drugs were stolen.

Posted by: BigDaddy651 | September 3, 2010 3:31 PM | Report abuse

Yeah: marijuana dealers aren't violent. Not really. These folks just had a bad day, I guess....

Posted by: confounded | September 3, 2010 4:25 PM | Report abuse

BTW: That little whoops with the video camera not working during the confession?

Well, under Maryland law, that will keep the defendant alive, since even an incompetent public defender will not allow a do-over. No death penalty without a video confession. Nice job, PG homicide detectives. Anything else you'd like to bungle?

Posted by: confounded | September 3, 2010 4:29 PM | Report abuse

It's Maryland...we both know they'd never execute even the most deserving criminal.

Posted by: BigDaddy651 | September 3, 2010 5:17 PM | Report abuse

6 more lives lost to prohibition. And 2 of them were kids. Sick.

Posted by: PabloKoh | September 4, 2010 8:49 AM | Report abuse

This story is beyond tragic, but I understood the babies were related to the man. Execution is too good for either of them.

Posted by: skinfreak | September 5, 2010 5:40 PM | Report abuse

There are two easily solvable problems here.

Problem one is unrestricted reproduction by morons. We encourage and tolerate it. Stop! Easily done, except for politics.

Problem two is illegal drugs. Legalize them and save billions of taxpayer dollars. End of problem.

We do not deal rationally with either difficulty because of politics. Politics always trumps America's future, because politicians willingly sell our future in exchange for their re-election.

Posted by: rwruger | September 6, 2010 7:07 PM | Report abuse

What boggles the mind is the false and it is very false belief that legalization will make things like this go away only a fool and the numbers continue to grow believe this is true.

Why do people deal in drugs simple they are illegal and so have a value. Remove any one two three of these items. What will not happen is these same folks will turn into upstanding model citizens.

They deal in the illegal and nothing will stop that. They may move to a new product but the end result will be and always be exactly the same.

Though I love the empty argument for legalization its just that empty.

Posted by: Brian429 | September 7, 2010 9:19 AM | Report abuse

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