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A Texas man is accused of murdering his pregnant girlfriend, who was found dead in a car with a sonogram picture of the unborn twins he fathered, police said.
Maurice Kelso Smith, 28, was arrested on June 29 in connection to the death of 26-year-old Darionne Burley. He is currently facing charges of capital murder, aggravated robbery, and tampering with evidence, The Dallas Morning News reported.
Police began investigating after a woman, not Burley, called 911 to report that she’d been carjacked at gunpoint by an unidentified man in the Mansfield area at around 1 p.m. on June 29, according to The Dallas Morning News. Upon arriving to the scene and investigating the area, police found a parked Honda Civic and an unresponsive woman — later identified as Burley — in the passenger seat. She had been fatally shot in the head, according to an affidavit obtained by the outlet.
When police searched the vehicle, which smelled like gunpowder, they found Burley’s wallet wedged between her body and the console. Inside was a sonogram image taken in June that showed the twin boys that Burley was pregnant with, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reported. There was also a backpack containing Smith’s belongings in the car, as well as a ticket to a gun show in Fort Worth that took place a day before the shooting, according to The Dallas Morning News.
The car itself was registered to Smith, and he was arrested later that day when police observed him at his apartment building cleaning SUV that he'd allegedly carjacked earlier that day.
During an interview with police, Smith recounted going out to breakfast at a Waffle House with Burley that morning, and said they got into an argument while leaving over the air in one of the Honda’s tires being low.
Smith said he took the car to a gas station to put air in the tire and then went to an an auto store but decided not to buy a new tire. He told officers that Burley then belittled him and accused him of being a junkie, according to an affidavit obtained by the Star-Telegram. He then claimed that Burley used the car to run errands while he returned to his apartment and smoked synthetic marijuana, authorities said.
However, Smith ended the interview when investigators brought up the prospect of him being in Mansfield at the time Burley was killed.
When searching Smith’s apartment, authorities say they found a .40-caliber pistol loaded with bullets that matched the caliber of the casing found in the Honda Civic near Burley’s body, according to the Star-Telegram. An unidentified friend told police that he bought the gun in question at a gun show in Fort Worth on Sunday and then sold it to Smith that day. Smith was not able to buy a gun himself on Saturday due to a failed background check, according to The Dallas Morning News.
Inside of Smith’s apartment, authorities also allegedly found bleach, a purse belonging to the woman who was carjacked, and clothes and a washcloth stained with blood.
Smith’s mother told police that Smith and Burley had had an on-again, off-again relationship since high school, and had recently hosted a gender reveal party ahead of the twins’ expected birth in October, the Star-Telegram reported.
Smith is currently in custody at the Tarrant County Correction Center, online jail records indicated. He has been charged with capital murder of multiple persons, aggravated robbery with a deadly weapon, unlawful possession of a firearm by a felon, and tampering with evidence, in addition to an alleged parole violation. His bail has been set at $700,000.
It was not immediately clear if he had an attorney able to comment on his behalf.
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