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Man Accused Of Killing Six After Allegedly Taking Selfie At Murder Scene
Travis Lamar Birkley allegedly took a photo of himself wearing a pair of glasses that belonged to Donta Williams, who was shot and killed in a Milwaukee house alongside Michelle Williams, Donald Smith, Charles Hardy, Javoni Liddell and Caleb Jordan in January.
A Wisconsin man has been arrested and charged with the January murders of six people after a selfie he allegedly took with one of the victims’ glasses linked him to the scene.
Travis Lamar Birkley, 34, was charged on Saturday with six counts of felony murder, according to a press release from the Milwaukee Police Department. Investigators detail in a criminal complaint that cellphone data linked Birkley back to the duplex where six bodies were found on Jan. 23.
He even allegedly took a selfie in the basement of that Milwaukee home where the six were killed in which he is wearing one of the victims’ expensive eyeglasses.
Investigators believe that Michelle Williams, 49, Donta Williams, 44, Donald Smith, 43, Charles Hardy, 42, Javoni Liddell, 31, and Caleb Jordan, 23 were shot to death three days before their bodies were found. Three of the individuals lived at the house. The bodies of Hardy, Liddell and Jordan were found in the home’s basement while the Williamses and Smith were found upstairs.
Autopsies showed that Donta Williams, Charles Hardy, Javoni Liddell and Caleb Jordan died after single gunshot wounds to the head and neck, but Michelle Williams suffered six gunshots and "multiple blunt force abrasions" and Donald Smith suffered both four gunshots and four "sharp force wounds, consistent with stab wounds."
In the charging documents, investigators alleged that they located a picture of Birkley on his phone wearing a pair of expensive eyeglasses while apparently in the basement of the home where the murders took place; they alleged that witnesses told them he did not need vision correction. Then, the documents state, a witness “was able to forward a photo of victim Donta Williams wearing what appears to be the same glasses, prior to his death. [...] This is consistent with the Defendant taking a photo of glasses taken from the deceased victim in the basement where all three dead victims are, all at a time consistent with all six victims already being dead.”
Birkley was also charged with armed robbery in connection to the murders, after an unidentified witness allegedly told investigators that he'd admitted to the sextuple homicide, claiming that it was a robbery gone wrong. That witness claimed that Birkley confessed to committing the crime with at least one other person.
In the charging documents, investigators note that evidence at the crime scene indicates that there could have been "two shooters" as two 9mm handguns appeared to have been used on the victims. Nobody else has been arrested or named as a suspect in the murders to date.
Birkley faces up to 330 years in prison if convicted. It’s not clear if he has an attorney. He is due back in court on June 15. His bail was set at $1 million on Sunday.