A California man charged with the double murder of two of his children wants to represent himself. The children’s father told a court in Los Angeles County that he had religious reasons for wanting to represent himself in court, and he claimed that there was a hit out on him.
35-year-old Maurice Jewel Taylor Sr. was arrested back in December 2020 and charged with two counts of murder involving his 12-year- old son Maurice Jr. and 13-year-old daughter Maliaka, along with two felony counts of child abuse under circumstances or conditions likely to cause great bodily injury or death involving his two other sons, who were 8 and 9 at the time.
Their mother, Natalie Sumiko Brothwell, 45, faces the same counts as Taylor Sr., who was arrested last September at her home in Tucson, Ariz.
The older children were reportedly stabbed on Nov. 29, 2020, and not found by authorities until five days later, said Deputy Eric Ortiz of the LASD, per Fox 11 Los Angeles.
The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office confirmed the children were decapitated, added the news outlet.
According to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office that the younger children were shown the dead bodies of their older siblings and had to stay in their bedrooms with no food for days.
If convicted, Taylor Sr. faces a sentence of 57 years and four months to life behind bars. It is still unknown whether Brothwell will have the same sentence. Taylor Sr. is being held in jail on a $4.2 million bond.
Taylor Sr. worked at a physical therapy center in Santa Monica, Calif., at the time the homicides took place. He was also working remotely during the pandemic.
Fox 11 Los Angeles reported some of his clients reached out to authorities after he couldn’t be reached for appointments around the time of the murders.
“I remember that house just seemed weird anytime I was there,” a neighbor told the Los Angeles Times in 2020.
“I never saw anybody come out of that house. It almost seemed like the windows were all blacked out.”
Watch the video below for more details: