Tag Archives: Largo

Suspect named in mother-daughter murders

I turned on the news today when I got home from work and they mentioned the Largo mother daughter murders.  A Prince Georges County grand jury returned a seven count indictment against 27 year old Jason Thomas Scott for the murders of Delores and Ebony Dewitt.

The indictment includes two counts of murder and two counts of burglary.  Even though indictments haven’t been handed down in the murders of Karen and Karissa Lofton , according to the Prince Georges County police Jason Scott is still a suspect in their murders as well as the murder of a woman in Bowie, MD.

The Washington Post didn’t have a lot of info but when I did a Google I found that ABC News.com had alot of information.  At the time I checked out ABC News this was front page news with his picture shown.  Hopefully the Post will have more information later tonight or tomorrow.  The Prince Georges County Gazette also has information about the indictment.  According to the Gazette:

A Prince George’s County grand jury indicted a Largo man in one of two mother-daughter killings that occurred last year in the Largo area, county State’s Attorney Glenn F. Ivey announced today, and county police say the man remains the main suspect in the second mother-daughter killing and several other homicides.

Jason Thomas Scott, 27, of Pritchard Lane was indicted on two counts of first-degree murder in the March 2009 deaths of Delores Dewitt, 42, and her 19-year-old daughter, Ebony Dewitt. Scott is a 2001 graduate of Largo High School who has been in jail since July 2009 on federal gun-trafficking charges. If convicted on the murder charges, he could get up to two life sentences in prison, Ivey said.

During a news conference today outside the county courthouse in Upper Marlboro, Ivey said the state’s attorney’s office is seeking life in prison without parole, adding Scott is not eligible for the death penalty under Maryland law, but declined to elaborate.

When I blog about crime situations I don’t normally post the picture of the criminal.  But this time I will.

Maryland: Suspect Named in Possible Serial Mother-Daughter Killings

Jason Thomas Scott, 27-Year-Old With a Computer Science Degree, Being Investigated for Other Unsolved Killings, Police Say

By PIERRE THOMAS and ENJOLI FRANCIS

Authorities are hoping they have the answer to a question that has plagued them since early 2009: Who killed two mother-daughter pairs in a two-month period in suburban Maryland?

Jason Thomas Scott, 27, was charged today in the murder of Delores and Ebony Dewitt, a mother and daughter who were found in a burning car in March 2009. A Prince George’s grand jury returned a seven-count indictment against Scott, including two counts of murder and two counts of burglary.

Law enforcement sources told ABC News that they believe Scott also killed Karen and Karissa Lofton two months prior in their locked home.

Maryland Community Shaken

The horror began Jan. 26, 2009, in Prince Georges County, Maryland, as an intruder neutralized the Loftons’ home alarm system and slipped inside.

Karen Lofton, a 45-year-old nurse, was fatally shot as she tried to hide in a corner. Her daughter Karissa, 16, was repeatedly shot as she frantically dialed 911 from her bed.

Police were perplexed. The doors were locked and there were no signs of forced entry. Neighbors were terrified.

You can read it all here.

I’m so glad to read that this monster is off the streets. And to think that he’s connected to more crimes including more murders and home invasions.  According to the ABC New article Jason Scott worked at UPS and apparently used their database to help select his victims.  That’s some scary mess to read that that’s how he selected his victims.  Unfortunately he’s not eligible for the death penalty in Maryland.

In May 2009, Gov. Martin O’Malley signed a bill that restricts the death penalty to cases in which there is biological or DNA evidence of guilt, a videotaped confession or a videotape that links the defendant to a homicide.

In September 2009 the Prince Georges County Gazette.com did a special feature on the Dewitt and Lofton murders.  It’s called Waiting Room.

You can check it out here.

Suspect found in mother-daughter murders

Prince Georges County police have found the man responsible for the murders of Ebony and Delores DeWitt and Karen and Karissa Lofton. The bodies of the DeWitts were found in January 2009 in a burning car and the bodies of the Loftons were found in March 2009.

Inmate may be suspect in Largo area mother-daughter slayings last year

By Matt Zapotosky
Washington Post Staff Writer
Tuesday, July 20, 2010; B01

Prince George’s County police detectives said they think they have a man in custody who is responsible for the slayings of two mother-daughter pairs in the Largo area last year, said sources familiar with the investigation.

The man is a stranger to the victims, and the sources said there was no obvious motive for the killings, making them think that he is a serial killer. Detectives are investigating whether the man might be tied to other unsolved slayings in the area.

The man has not been charged in the mother-daughter killings, the sources said. Authorities are making sure they have a good case and need not hurry because the man is in prison on other charges, they said. The sources, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the investigation is continuing, declined to name the suspect.

Police are saying that the suspect could be a serial criminal.  He might also be responsible for the murder of a woman in Bowie, MD and crimes in other states.

In Prince George’s, a chilling portrait of a skillful serial killer

By Matt Zapotosky
Washington Post Staff Writer
Wednesday, July 21, 2010; A01

The man responsible for the slayings of two mothers and their daughters in the Largo area last year is a crafty serial killer who pored through books about forensic science to learn how to clean up his crime scenes and intentionally changed his killing methods to confuse detectives, law enforcement sources close to the investigation said.

He holds two master’s degrees and was so good that he duped an FBI profiler into concluding that the killings were unrelated, the sources said. And long after he is brought to trial, Prince George’s Police Chief Roberto L. Hylton predicted, he will be remembered as “one of America’s most infamous killers.”

For now, at least, he is behind bars on unrelated charges.

“This case before you, I think, is going to be a case study for many law enforcement agencies in the future,” Hylton said Tuesday, delivering his first public remarks about the suspect. “This was an individual that was very well read, a studious person, that studied the policing system, knew the policing system, knew about his craft.”

The man, who is 27 and is being held on federal weapons and sex charges, has not been charged with the Largo killings. Hylton and other police officials declined to name him because he has not been charged. But Hylton said he expects the man to be indicted within the month in connection with the killings of Delores Dewitt, 42, and her 20-year-old daughter, Ebony. Their bodies were found March 16, 2009, in a burning car in Largo that had been stolen that day.

Hylton said the devastation may extend well beyond that. Detectives also think the man is responsible for the slayings of Karen Lofton, 45, and her 16-year-old daughter, Karissa, who were found shot in their locked home Jan. 26, 2009. And detectives are investigating whether he might be responsible for a 2008 killing in which a Bowie woman was shot before her home was set ablaze. He also is being investigated in connection with other crimes in the Washington area and as far away as Texas and Florida, Hylton and law enforcement sources said.

“He’s a serial killer,” Hylton said.

Prince Georges County Police Chief Roberto Hylton has stated that there is plenty of evidence against the suspect who grew up in the same neighborhood as the DeWitts and Loftons.  He is also described as highly educated with 2 degrees and held a job with a delivery company. The suspect is currently behind bars on federal charges.

I blogged about these murders last year.  I first heard about a break in the cases on the news Monday morning.  I was wondering what was going on with these two cases and hoping that it wouldn’t turn into a cold case.

Wegmans leases office space in Largo

Things are looking up when it comes to the new Wegmans at Woodmore Towne Centre at Glenarden. According to the Washington Business Journal Wegmans has signed a lease for a 122,000 square foot office and warehouse building in Largo, Maryland.

wegmans

Wegmans takes office space in Maryland
Washington Business Journal
by Tierney Plumb
Staff Reporter

Wegmans Food Markets Inc. is taking office space at 9475 Lottsford Road in Largo to support the grocer’s planned location in Prince George’s County.

In 2006 the Rochester, N.Y.-based supermarket chain announced plans to build a store at the Woodmore Towne Centre at Glenarden. It is slated to open in the fourth quarter of 2010.

Wegmans signed a 4,673-square-foot lease at the 122,000-square-foot office and warehouse building, which is 88 percent leased.

The space will function as an employment office, so that when the company starts to hire for the store those prospects would come in for interviews. Some training will also be held there before the store opens.

Looks like the new Wegmans won’t open until late next year.

Murders in Largo Part 2

This week the Washington Post has featured a couple of articles about the Largo murders of Delores & Ebony Dewitt and Karen & Karissa Lofton. Tuesday’s paper featured a front page story about whether there’s a link between the two murders.

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4 Women Dead, Countless Questions Unanswered in Largo

‘Everybody’s a Person of Interest,’ Police Chief Says As Investigators, Residents Grapple With Homicides

By Aaron C. Davis
Washington Post Staff Writer
Tuesday, March 24, 2009

A chill went down Courtney Hicks’s back when she arrived at her family’s Largo home after 10 p.m. The lights were on, her sister’s jacket was by the door and her mother’s car was in the driveway. Everything seemed in place that March 15 night — except that when she called out, no one answered.

Hicks, 17, said the hair on her neck stood up, the same way it had in the fall when she found the small two-story house burglarized. She turned on every light. She checked her mother’s and sister’s rooms, then left and began frantically calling their cellphones. About 2 a.m., she returned to find the lights still on and the house still empty.

Two hours later, as Hicks worried, police found two bodies in a burning car nearby, one in the back seat and the other in the trunk. Authorities identified them later as Hicks’s sister Ebony Dewitt, 20, and mother, Delores Dewitt, 42.

“I thought for sure something had gone wrong,” said Hicks, a student at Prince George’s County Community College. “But I never thought in a million years that it would be the outcome that it was.”

The possibility that the killings of the Dewitts are linked to the slayings of another mother and daughter — Karen and Karissa Lofton, found shot in their Largo home in January — has prompted Prince George’s County police to assign more than two dozen investigators to those cases.

Connected or not, detectives say each set of killings is baffling in its own right. The absence of an obvious suspect or motive — an angry ex-boyfriend, a drug deal gone bad — has made the slayings more unsettling for residents than any in years in Prince George’s.

“This is so bizarre,” Police Chief Roberto Hylton said of the two sets of killings. “Everybody’s a person of interest.”

The entire article can be read here.

Today’s Post has a front page story in the Prince Georges’s EXTRA. This article also talks about the link between the two murder cases, interviews with family members including Karen Lofton’s ex-husband and additional information about Karen and Karissa. This article places more emphasis on the Loftons.

karen_karissa_lofton

Slayings of Second Pair Redirect Investigation
Attention Reverts to Case Of Mother and Daughter Who Were Killed in January

By Aaron C. Davis and William Wan
Washington Post Staff Writers
Thursday, March 26, 2009; PG01

The fear and mystery surrounding two Prince George’s County mother-daughter homicides began two months ago today, when police found the bodies of Karen and Karissa Lofton in their home in a quiet Largo area neighborhood.

Whether their deaths are found to be linked to the killings last week of Delores and Ebony Dewitt, whose bodies were found burned in a stolen car less than a mile away, the similarities between the victims have refocused attention on the Loftons.

Their family members and friends said they have struggled to accept their loved ones’ sudden and brutal deaths.

“The wounds are still very deep,” said Karen Price of Lanham, a sister-in-law of Karen Lofton’s. “We’re all still reeling from their deaths. We want this case resolved so badly.”

The case will be the subject of an episode of “America’s Most Wanted,” possibly this weekend, said Karen Lofton’s ex-husband, Kirkland Lofton Sr. He has been working through a relative with John Walsh, the host of the long-running TV show, to feature the Jan. 26 killings of Karen, 45, and Karissa, 16.

The show posted a story about the slayings on its Web site last week and has filmed a segment in the victims’ home in the 10800 block of Southall Drive. A candlelight vigil will be held in front of the house tonight at 8, Lofton said.

Family members and friends said the shooting deaths of the school nurse and teenager who loved fashion and modeling cut short the lives of a mother and daughter who had much to offer.

Karen Lofton, who sometimes used her maiden name, Sherill, had just started working at Lake Arbor Elementary School in Mitchellville. She worked one day, according to a school employee who spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the subject, and never returned for orientation. The school later got a call that Lofton had been found dead.

Karissa, a junior at Riverdale Baptist High School in Upper Marlboro, was an aspiring model and fashion designer who had recently enrolled in the Girls of Character program at Woodstream Church of Mitchellville, where the family worshipped before switching to Hosanna Ministries in the District.

Click here to read the entire article.

When the Loftons were murdered some folks wondered if they knew the murderer since the front door was locked.  Karissa was able to call 911 but apparently she wasn’t able to identify who shot her and her mother.  I will be relieved when they catch the murderer(s).  It’s an uneasy feeling knowing that some murdering fool is running loose in the area.

Funeral held for Delores & Ebony Dewitt

Funeral services were held yesterday at the Lively Stone Church in Landover, Maryland for Delores & Ebony Dewitt, the mother and daughter found murdered in a stolen car in Largo, Maryland early Monday morning.

delores_ebony_dewitt_21

dewitt_funeral

dewitt_funeral_2

Grief’s Unanswered Question: Why?
Funeral Held for Slain Md. Mother, Daughter Found in Car

By Nelson Hernandez and Aaron C. Davis
Washington Post Staff Writers
Saturday, March 21, 2009

There was a short time yesterday at the funeral of Delores and Ebony Dewitt when nothing could be heard amid the hundreds of people but the soft tones of an organ and the heaving sobs of a sister wracked by grief.

“My baby!” screamed Patricia Smith, Delores Dewitt’s sister. “Oh, Lord, Lord, Lord! Why, why, why?” That, in its raw pain, was the question: Why were a mother, Delores, and daughter from a close-knit family, who believed in God and hard work, found dead Monday in a burned-out stolen car in the Largo area?

Bishop Willie O. Pittman of New Memorial Temple in Capitol Heights had been giving a eulogy searching for an answer to that question but stopped to console Smith. He stepped down from the dais to the floor, where a pair of urns holding the remains of Delores, 42, and Ebony, 20, were flanked by pictures of them.

“Sometimes you have to pull the rose out of the garden to make a bouquet,” he said afterward.

“She was a beautiful person. She smiled; she laughed,” Victoria Thompson, Delores’s other sister, said of Ebony. “We miss our niece, but we are hopeful that justice will prevail.”

The emotional service at the Lively Stone Church in Landover was an extension of the message that Rosa Mae Smith, 61, the family matriarch, had preached to the family members who had gathered at her Hyattsville home Thursday evening.

“There is no way to explain it,” Smith told a reporter in her living room as seven family members looked on. “We pray to God to take us through it, not to explain it, and to wait for justice to be done,” said Smith, a pastor at the True Gospel Temple in Landover.

Police had not discussed a motive or suspects in the case. They were investigating a possible connection to the unsolved slayings of another mother and daughter less than a mile away in January.

Prince Georges County police have released a photo of handbags that might have been stolen from the deceased.

handbags

Photos of Handbags Released
Purses Might Have Been Taken From 2 Women, Police Say

By Aaron C. Davis
Washington Post Staff Writer
Friday, March 20, 2009; B05

A task force investigating the killings of four women in the Largo area released pictures yesterday of handbags that police said might have been taken from women found burned early Monday in a stolen car.

Prince George’s County police officials are asking anyone who has noticed a multicolored Fossil handbag or black patent leather handbag with a large Cadillac emblem to contact detectives.

Police also want to speak with anyone who might have seen the stolen champagne-colored 2005 Nissan Maxima in which the bodies of Delores and Ebony Dewitt were found shortly before 4 a.m. in the 11100 block of Webbwood Court.

Police Chief Roberto L. Hylton said he thinks that the car might have been stolen less than two hours before the bodies were found.

You can click on the link here to watch an NBC4.com video about the case.  And check out MyFoxDC.com to read more information about this case.

According to MyFoxDC.com America’s Most Wanted is looking into both the Dewitt and Lofton  murders.  You can check it out here.

Murders in Largo

Things aren’t going so great in the Largo/Upper Marlboro, MD area lately. With some folks using The Boulevard shopping center as a shooting gallery and now the latest where mothers and daughters are being murdered, what’s a person to do? In January a mother and daughter, Karen and Karissa Lofton, were found murdered in their home in Largo.

Teenager, Her Mother Fatally Shot in Largo

By Ruben Castaneda
Washington Post Staff Writer
Tuesday, January 27, 2009

A mother and daughter were shot to death early yesterday in their home in a quiet Largo neighborhood, probably by someone who knew them, Prince George’s County police said.

Acting Chief Roberto Hylton said there was no indication of forced entry into the two-story, colonial-style home in the 10800 block of Southall Drive. There was also no indication that anything was stolen, he said.

“This is an isolated incident,” Hylton said. “This is not a serial killer.”
Police identified the victims last night as Karen and Karissa Lofton. They did not give ages or say which was the mother and which was the daughter. Public records list a Karen Lofton, 45, on Southall Drive.

The daughter, believed to be in her teens, called 911 about 2:30 a.m. to report that she and her mother had been shot and needed help, Hylton said. Police arrived and found both victims fatally shot in the upper part of the home, Hylton said.

This past Monday the burning bodies of another mother and daughter, Delores and Ebony Dewitt, were found less than a half a mile from where they found the Loftons.

Women’s Bodies Found Inside Burning Vehicle

By Matt Zapotosky
Washington Post Staff Writer
Tuesday, March 17, 2009

A 911 call about a car on fire led authorities in Prince George’s County to a grisly scene yesterday: the bodies of two women in the car’s trunk and back seat, law enforcement sources said.

Firefighters arrived at a house in the 11100 block of Webbwood Court in Upper Marlboro just before 4 a.m. to find a Toyota Camry in the driveway engulfed in flames, authorities said. When they put the blaze out and examined the vehicle, they found the two bodies, police said.

Officer Larry Johnson, a Prince George’s police spokesman, said the bodies were “so badly burned” that they could not be identified, and that detectives do not have any suspects in the deaths. He said the car was stolen from a nearby house in the 10800 block of Woodlawn Boulevard, but its owner and the owner of the house on Webbwood Court appeared to have no connection to the victims.

Johnson said autopsies would be performed.

Bernadine Conrad, 70, said she was asleep about 3:30 a.m. yesterday when she was awakened by what sounded like a bomb. When she looked out her window, she saw the burning car in front of a vacant house next door.

Conrad called 911 and later told detectives that she did not see anyone running from the vacant house before or after the fire.

The incident marks the second time in recent months that two women have been killed in the neighborhood. Police have no information suggesting the cases are connected, Johnson said. At the end of January, a mother and daughter were shot to death in the 10800 block of Southall Drive, less than a half-mile from where the car was found. Police said those two women were probably killed by someone who knew them, but no arrests have been made.

lofton_dewitt

Prince Georges County police are wondering if they’re dealing with a serial killer.

2 Mothers, 2 Daughters Dead; Pr. George’s Police Seek Link

By Aaron C. Davis
Washington Post Staff Writer
Wednesday, March 18, 2009; B01

Prince George’s County police said last night that they are investigating whether the same killer is responsible for two recent double homicides, each of which resulted in the deaths of a mother and her daughter.

At a news conference, police said they have no physical evidence linking the two sets of killings, and the victims appear to have been killed in different ways. Even so, police said they were deeply troubled by similarities between the cases, one in January and one this week.

The bodies were found within a half-mile of each another in a quiet middle-class neighborhood in the Largo area. In each case, the mothers were in their 40s and the daughters were teenagers. The killings took place early in the morning, and each has a possible link to a burglary.

“This is priority one for the department,” said Maj. Andy Ellis, the police department’s head spokesman. “The similarities are very worrisome, very unusual, and they have caused us great concern.”

Chief Roberto Hylton said later: “I don’t want to say we’re working a serial murderer. That’s a possibility, but we’re not there yet.”

The police department formed a task force, and detectives are working in shifts round-the-clock to chase leads. Police announced a $25,000 reward for information leading to arrests in each case.

Ellis said investigators are searching for links between the two families but have found none. The girls attended different schools.

Police asked that residents of the area near the killings not enter their homes if they are burglarized. The task force will examine all burglaries during the past year, starting with those near the killings.

Early Monday, police found two bodies in a burning car, one in the back seat and the other in the trunk. Using dental records, police identified the victims as Dolores DeWitt, 42, and Ebony DeWitt, 19, of the 9700 block of Cedarhollow Lane.

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I’m very familiar with the White House Road and Brown Station Road area right of Route 202. You’re talking about a nice peaceful area. It gets very scary when something like this happens in your neck of the woods.

As Task Force Looks for Links, Largo Ponders Double Slayings

By Aaron C. Davis, Avis Thomas-Lester and William Wan
Washington Post Staff Writers
Thursday, March 19, 2009

Inside Prince George’s County police headquarters yesterday, a squad of homicide detectives and nearly a dozen other senior investigators moved into a separate office, closed the door and began poring over two cases that were suddenly the department’s top priority.

Not far away, in a quiet neighborhood near FedEx Field, all anyone talked about was the possibility that the cases — two double homicides — were connected, that someone is killing mothers and their daughters.

The Loftons, Karen and Karissa, were the first, shot in late January in their Largo home. On Monday, less than a half-mile away, the bodies of Deloris and Ebony Dewitt were found in a burning car, one in the trunk, the other in the back seat.

“To me, the feeling is there’s just got to be some kind of connection,” said Michael Jeter, 45, a neighbor of the Dewitts. “It just makes you think, two daughters, two mothers, killed like that.”

Near where the Dewitts lived, in an aging subdivision of modest homes and carefully tended lawns, many residents left their porch lights on all night. Neighbors who were little more than strangers exchanged phone numbers and pledged to look out for each other. One man tried to break into his own home, just to see whether it could be done.

“Everybody in this neighborhood is in fear right now,” said William Mackall, 62, who lives several blocks from the Dewitt home. “I have kids, but thank God, just boys, no girls.”

At a news conference Tuesday night, police said they could not rule out the possibility that a serial killer was responsible for the slayings. No physical evidence linked the killings, but police said the parallels were disturbing and went beyond proximity: In each case, the mothers were in their 40s and the daughters were teenagers. They were found dead early in the morning, on a Monday.

One other commonality that emerged yesterday — Karen Lofton, 45, and Deloris Dewitt, 43, were both nurses — appeared to be coincidence, police said. Lofton had just finished her first day of orientation to be a school nurse in Largo. Dewitt had worked at a nursing home in Clinton for nine years.

Here’s more info from the Prince Georges Gazette:

Homicides spur call for residents to check for keys

Police believe keys to stolen car used in homicide were stolen weeks before incident

by Liz Skalski and Greg Holzheimer | Staff Writers

Prince George’s County police believe keys to the stolen car involved in the homicide of a Largo mother and daughter may have been stolen weeks earlier. County police are urging residents to call police if they notice keys from their homes have been stolen.

During a packed neighborhood meeting in the cafeteria of Phyllis E. Williams Elementary School, Lt. William Rayle, commander of the county homicide department’s criminal investigative division, said police are following 30 leads regarding the deaths of Delores Renee Dewitt, 42, and Ebony Dewitt, 19, whose bodies were found in a burning car Monday morning.

Police said Thursday evening the two women’s purses are missing, a multi-colored Fossil purse and a black patent leather purse with a large Cadillac emblem in the center.

The car, a light-colored Nissan Maxima sedan, was found within two miles of the Largo home of Karen Lofton, 45, and her 16-year-old daughter, Karissa Lofton, who were found dead Jan. 26, also early on a Monday.

Rayle warned the roughly 100 residents who attended the meeting to make sure their home and car keys are accounted for and to lock windows and doors.

Police found the bodies of Delores Dewitt and her daughter in a stolen car that had been burned in a driveway in the 11100 block of Webbwood Court in Largo, minutes after the car’s owner reported the theft. The owner of the stolen car told police later that day a spare set of keys had been stolen in February from the owner’s Woodlawn Boulevard home, said Officer Evan Baxter, a police spokesman.

I just hope and pray that the police will be able to find the murderer or murderers, lock their asses up and throw away the damn key for life.

My prayers go out to the Lofton and Dewitt families.

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