ABC11 Investigates

Plea deal in works for cult murder

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

A third plea deal is in the works for one of the main suspects in the Black Hebrews cult murders in Durham, according to the victim's mother.

In all, seven people were arrested in connection with the murders of 4-year-old Jadon Higganbothan and 28-year-old Antoinetta McKoy. But many of the suspects will never make it to trial.

The third plea involves Vania Sisk, Higganbothan's mother and the person police believe fatally shot McKoy. According to McKoy's mother, the Durham district attorney has offered Sisk 39 years in prison, avoiding a lengthy trial.

The Durham district attorney's office will not confirm whether there's a plea deal in the works and declined to comment about specific details in the case. In a statement, the office said:

"We have to weigh the strengths and weakness of our cases based on the evidence available that can be produced at trial. We always try to honor the wishes of the victims and victim's families. Sometimes we have to make a judgment call. We're not always able to please all victims. We certainly make an effort to do so."

Investigators say Sisk watched the cult leader, Peter Moses Jr. gun down her son and then later, under Moses' command, fired the shot that killed McKoy.

In a plea deal, Moses pled guilty, receiving two life sentences and avoiding the death penalty.

McKoy's family is outraged and frustrated at the possibility of Sisk ever leaving prison.

"This is where I feel justice is not being served. My daughter is no longer here. Neither is her child. So the same amount of time Mr. Moses got, she should receive as well," McKoy's mother, Yvonne McKoy said.

Moses' sister, Sheila Moses and his mother, Sheilda Harris, were cleared of all charges and walked free. Harris was the homeowner where the bodies of Higganbothan and McKoy were found in the backyard.

"Even with the two that were released, if you felt as though you had some type of evidence, they would've never been arrested," McKoy's sister said.

The district attorney also worked out a plea deal with Larhonda Smith, giving her a minimum of 25 years in prison.

Moses' brother and one of his female followers remain in jail.

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Tags:
durham county, peter moses, abc11 investigates, tamara gibbs
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