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A Virginia toddler and baby were left alone for three days with their mother, father and older half-brother’s decomposing bodies before deputies discovered the children amid the carnage, according to disturbing new details revealed in the triple homicide.
Three of the five men charged with killing Rachel Ozuna, 34; her boyfriend Michael Coleman, 39; and Ozuna’s 14-year-old son Kyrrus Ozuna, appeared in court Wednesday for a preliminary hearing in the case, according to WRC-TV.
Prosecutors played a deputy’s heartbreaking body cam footage of the moment he found Rachel Ozuna face down in the nursery of the couple’s home. Her 2-year-old was found standing next to his dead mother. Rachel’s baby daughter was strapped into an infant swing nearby.
The lead detective in the case testified that authorities believe the children had been alone in the home with their dead family members for three days before they were found by authorities.
The deputy can be seen in the footage quietly speaking to the children, before picking them up and carrying them out of the house.
Spotsylvania Sheriff’s Office Capt. Elizabeth Scott told Oxygen.com last year shortly after the murders that the children had been “pretty dehydrated” but were not physically harmed.
Prosecutors also played the harrowing 911 call from Kyrrus’ father Benjamin Jimenez, who called 911 after stumbling upon his son tied up with his throat slashed on May 29, 2019.
Jimenez had gone to the home after he hadn’t spoken to his son in several days and became concerned.
“Somebody got murdered,” Jimenez told the dispatcher between sobs during the 12-minute call.
When the dispatcher asked where Jimenez son was, he responded “He’s in the bathroom tied up and in a pool of blood,” according to the local station.
The distraught father told dispatchers he couldn’t go back into the bathroom again.
“I can’t go back in there,” he said, according to The Fredericksburg Freelance-Star. “I can’t see him like that again.”
Nearly a year after the grisly discovery, authorities arrested five Philadelphia men — Hugh Cameron Green, 31; Durward Anthony Allen, 29; Montel Jaleek Wilson, 28; James C. Myers 36, and Jamal Bailey, 28 — and charged them with first-degree murder.
Scott told Oxygen.com that Wilson was the nephew of Coleman’s ex-wife and knew the victim.
Investigators initially revealed few clues about a possible motive in the slayings, but said in court Wednesday that Coleman had been a large-scale drug dealer. He was known to keep as much as $100,000 in cash at his home, authorities said.
Investigators were allegedly able to link the suspects to the crime primarily through cellphone data and videos. Spotsylvania Det. James Herdman testified that cell phone data showed the suspects left Philadelphia on the morning of May 25 and had been staying at the Quality Inn in Fredericksburg before the killings. Photos showed two of the suspects, Bailey and Allen, at the hotel’s pool. Three of the men also went to a nearby Gold’s Gym, authorities said, according to WRC-TV.
According to the cell phone data, the phones left the area on May 26 around 1:30 p.m.
Herdman said investigators believe the family was killed sometime between noon and 1 p.m. on May 26, 2019. They were able to piece the timeline together, in part, because Kyrrus had reached out to a friend to play video games at 11:45 a.m. and then just abruptly left the game around noon, the local paper reports.
Investigators also recovered what they believe was incriminating evidence after the murders. A video found on one of the suspect’s cell phones showed the suspects at a Philadelphia strip club on June 1, 2019 with large stacks of money.
One of the defendants was also overheard in a recorded jailhouse phone call, telling a jailed relative “You hear that?” and then “That’s the money machine” as a slapping sound could be heard in the background, authorities said.
Green’s attorney, Bill Neely, had argued that the case was “very, very thin” and believed in light of the evidence presented that the charges should be dropped.
“He’s been held for a year now and there’s still been no evidence linking him to the crime,” he said, according to the paper. “Anybody could have had those phones.”
Other defense attorneys, representing Allen and Wilson, pointed a lack of physical evidence linking the men to the murders.
The judge disagreed, however, and ruled there was enough probable cause in the case to move the charges forward.
The preliminary hearing for Myers and Bailey is still pending.
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