Brandon D. Wilson, a 19-year-old charged with killing the housesitter of a home he had lived in as a foster child, allegedly used a hand weight in the killing and attempted to clean-up the scene, an assistant prosecutor said Monday at the teen's detention hearing.
Wilson, of Paulsboro, allegedly killed Shawneeq M. Carter, 26, on Sept. 23 when he broke into the home on Hopkins Street to commit a burglary, officials said.
Gloucester County Judge Christine Allen-Jackson ordered Wilson be detained until trial. She had instructed Cape May Correctional staff to use "any necessary force" to bring Wilson to court after he refused to participate and attend his pre-trial detention hearing Monday morning.
According to Assistant Prosecutor Dianna Rolando, police responded after two 5-year-olds who had been in the home wandered out of the house saying they were hungry. Police went to the home and found Carter's body in a second floor bedroom.
As they investigated the scene, they found that someone had attempted to clean the crime scene, leaving a shirt, bed sheet and cleaning supplies in the kitchen, Rolando said.
A palm print was also found on an outside window of the home with DNA matching Wilson's, according to Rolando. The DNA may also match DNA found on the murder weapon -- a hand weight -- and a shirt from inside the home, both of which had Carter's blood on them, Rolando said.
Rolando noted that the state is still awaiting further test results to confirm the DNA matches.
Wilson's attorney, Katherine Constantine, argued that the evidence against Wilson is "weak."
"As indicated, [Wilson] had previously lived there, it's not unexpected that his DNA may be in locations at the residence," she said. "This does not create probable cause."
Rolando responded that the weight, allegedly used to bludgeon Carter was purchased after Wilson had lived in the home.
The lawyers also argued over sneaker tracks found at the scene which have since lead to charges against Wilson's parents. According to Rolando, a sneaker print at the scene led investigators to ask Cape May jail officials to remove Wilson's shoes for inspection. Wilson then allegedly called his parents from jail and asked them to get rid of two additional pairs of shoes, police said at the time.
Investigators recovered two pairs of sneakers that were wet and smelled of cleaning solution from the attic of his Paulsboro home, according to the prosecutor's office.
The prosecutor's office on Monday afternoon charged Wilson's parents with hindering their son's arrest.
David A. Wilson, 52, and Kim Ward, 50, of Paulsboro, allegedly cleaned and concealed their son's sneakers, according to a statement from the Gloucester County Prosecutor's Office.
Allen-Jackson ruled that the evidence, the attempts to hinder the investigation and Wilson's pending murder charge were enough to order him detained. However, she also referred to his previous criminal record which includes trespassing and obstruction, as well as drug, burglary and theft charges.
Wilson's arrest record spans two states.
In addition to murder, Wilson is charged with second-degree burglary during which a death occurred, two counts of endangering the welfare of a child, obstruction, and weapons offenses.
He is scheduled to appear for pre-indictment arraignment on Jan. 4.
Caitlyn Stulpin may be reached at email@example.com. Follow her on Twitter @caitstulpin. Find NJ.com on Facebook....Read more