Man charged in 2008 deaths of two girls near Weleetka

BY ANDREW KNITTLE aknittle@opubco.com Modified: December 9, 2011 at 9:25 pm •  Published: December 9, 2011

Prosecutors plan to seek the death penalty against a man who said he shot and killed two girls three years ago near Weleetka because he thought they were monsters.

Kevin Sweat, who was being held for another murder when the new charges were filed Friday, is now charged in the June 8, 2008, shooting deaths of Taylor Dawn Paschal-Placker, 13, and Skyla Jade Whitaker, 11.

Authorities announced the charges during a news conference Friday, bringing a sense of closure to one of the highest-profile unsolved murders in years.

Sweat, who is being held without bail in Seminole County jail, already was facing a murder charge in the death of Ashley Taylor, 23.

Taylor and Sweat, according to family members, were a couple. Taylor's charred remains were found Aug. 4 on property belonging to Sweat's father, court documents show.

Okfuskee County District Attorney Max Cook said prosecutors will seek the death penalty in the slayings of the two girls.

Authorities released an affidavit of an interview Sweat gave Sept. 13 to an Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation agent.

During the interview, Sweat referred to the girls as “monsters” and said he “panicked” when they came toward his car, so he grabbed a Glock .40-caliber handgun out of his glove box, shot them and then grabbed a .22-caliber gun and shot them again, agent Kurt Titsworth said.

The best friends had gone for a walk to Bad Creek Bridge on County Line Road and were shot a combined total of 13 times as they returned.

Investigators were able to match the shell casings because the gun previously was owned by the Baltimore Police Department, which had returned the weapon to the manufacturer for unspecified reasons some time before 2006, according to court documents.

Baltimore police retained a single casing from the gun, which investigators were able to match to casings found at the crime scene.

Investigators were able to trace the gun to Sweat because it was sold to an Oklahoma gun dealer after it was returned by the Baltimore Police Department.

Authorities say they still are seeking evidence in the case, including the .22-caliber gun Sweat told investigators he used that day.

Family, community relieved

Joe Mosher, Paschal-Placker's great-uncle, said the family is relieved and grateful the death penalty will be sought.

“The death penalty is too good for this man. I think they ought to just throw him in prison and let the inmates tear him apart,” Mosher said. “He'll sit on death row for 20 years before they execute him. He needs to die without a moment to think about it like the girls did.

Sweat was acquainted with Paschal-Placker's mother, Jennifer, and his grandfather and father both owned property near the scene of the shooting, families of both girls said when the suspect was first publicly linked to the slayings in November.

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