Mansion Murders Suspect Searched for Hideout Cities on Phone, Witness Testifies

In the days following the murder of three members of a D.C. family and their housekeeper, the man accused of committing the crime searched for countries with no extradition treaties and hideout cities for fugitives on his cellphone, an expert witness testified Tuesday.

Daron Wint is charged with murder in the deaths of Savvas Savopoulos, 46; his wife, Amy, 47; their 10-year-old son, Philip, and housekeeper Veralicia Figueroa, 57. He is accused of holding the victims captive, extorting $40,000 and setting their Northwest Washington mansion on fire.

An expert witness testified Tuesday that when analyzing the cellphone believed to be Wint's, they found the following topics were searched in the four days that followed the murders: 10 hideout cities for fugitives, five countries with no extradition treaty and how to factory reset iPhone6 without Apple password.

A forensic pathologist from the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Baltimore detailed how the victims were killed while prosecutors displayed graphic images on a screen. Many jurors were visibly disturbed.

A forensic anthropologist with the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in D.C. told the court the burn injuries of Philip were so extensive she had to use X-rays to positively identify his body. She went on to discuss the extent of the boy’s injuries, which was too emotional for Philip’s maternal grandmother, who quickly walked out of the courtroom.

A verdict could come as soon as the end of the month. 

Last week, jurors heard from several of Wint’s family members, including his brother-in-law Derrick Ayling, who testified that Wint showed him a wad of $100 bills and asked him to help burn his blue minivan one day after three members of the Savopoulos family and their housekeeper were murdered and their Northwest Washington home was set on fire.

Wint’s former fiancee, Vanessa Hayles, took an immunity deal to testify and told jurors that Wint stayed with her in New York after the murders. She said he told her he won the lottery and was paying for dinner and shopping sprees in cash.

Hayles testified she saw Wint’s mug shot on TV the night of May 20, 2015. She and Wint fled to a nearby hotel before he would take a cab ride back to D.C. the next day, she said.

Wint’s cousin George Elias also was called to the witness stand and told jurors Wint’s brother Darrell Wint asked for help to turn him in on May 21. Elias agreed and said he and Darrell Wint were in a box truck with Daron Wint behind them in a car with Darrell Wint’s friends when U.S. marshals moved in to make the arrest.

The prosecution is trying to show Darrell Wint wasn't involved with the murders and went out of his way to help turn his brother in to police.

The defense will argue Wint’s brothers committed the crime.

Wint faces life in prison without possibility for release on each murder charge. The minimum sentence is 30 years on each murder charge.

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