Posted on August 9, 2010

Two Charged in ‘Very Disturbing’ Maryland Killings

CNN, August 7, 2010

Two people were charged Saturday in “very disturbing” drug-related killings of two young children and two adult relatives outside Washington D.C.

Darrell Lynn Bellard, 43, of Dickinson, Texas, and Tkeisha Nicole Gilmer, 18, of Texas City, Texas were taken into custody Friday and charged with first-degree murder, police in Prince George’s County, Maryland, told CNN. More charges are being considered.

The incident took place Friday at a debris-filled living space in Lanham, Maryland, a crime scene that Police Chief Roberto Hylton described as “horrific.”

The victims have been identified Shayla Shante, 3, and Shakur Sylvester Sikyala, 4, both slain along with their mother, Dawn Yvette Brooks, 38, and their aunt, Mwasiti Sikyala, 41. Police said some of the victims may have been Congolese.

Hylton told CNN Saturday that the suspects and the victims were part of a “drug sales relationship and something went wrong.” Police said they were selling marijuana.

“They were executed. They were shot multiple times” and the manner in which the children were slain was “very disturbing,” Hylton said.


Police described a living space above a house’s garage that had no running water, air-conditioning or toilets, and was strewn with trash and containers of feces.

Officers had been given specialized outfits and equipment to help clear the debris.