Sterling Heights man arraigned in killings of 4 women
Nov 27, 2012 (Menafn - Detroit Free Press - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) --Family members of four slain women packed a Macomb County courtroom Monday as a 24-year-old Sterling Heights man was arraigned on charges he killed the women he met on Backpage.com.
Four counts of murder were added to a list of charges filed against James Brown in connection with the disappearance and killings of Demesha Hunt, Renisha Landers, Natasha Curtis and Vernithea McCrary.
Brown also faces four counts of disinterment and mutilation of a dead body, one count of arson of real property and one count of arson of personal property.
His preliminary examination is scheduled for Jan. 9.
He faces life in prison on the first-degree murder charges.
"Knowing that he's going to go to jail for a long time for what he did ... I'm just happy with the murder charges," said Chikita Madison, mother of Renisha Landers, as she stood next to Denise Reid, mother of Demesha Hunt, after the arraignment.
"It was hard. I almost cried. But I'm happy, too, because my daughter -- our daughters -- are in heaven. They're all right. We'll see them again when it's our time. I just want him to get what he deserves."
Investigators say Brown made contact with the women through the online classified site, then lured them to his home on Vancouver in Sterling Heights.
Cell phone records show cousins Hunt and Landers visited Brown on Dec. 18, 2011. Their bodies were found in the trunk of a car on Promenade in Detroit the next day.
Police say Curtis and McCrary went to Brown's home on Dec. 24, and their bodies were found in a car burning on Lannette in Detroit on Christmas Day.
Cell phone records show that the final calls made from the victims' phones were transmitted through the cell tower adjacent to Brown's house on Vancouver, according to a news release Monday from Macomb County Prosecutor Eric Smith.
Madison and other family members said they didn't know about a possible link to Backpage.com until notified by police.
"Everything's going to come out soon enough," said Domonique Reid, 22, a first cousin to both Landers and Renisha Reid.
"Just as it is so random to you, it is to us, too. We're just finding out."
Contact Tammy Stables Battaglia: firstname.lastname@example.org or 313-949-7291. Follow her on Twitter @tammybattaglia
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