Seven indicted in 'cult' murder case

L to r from top to bottom: Peter Moses, Vania Sisk, Sheila Moses, Sheilda Harris, Lavada Harris, Larhonda Smith and P. Leonard Moses
June 27, 2011 9:00:00 PM PDT
Grand jury has indicted seven people in connection with two deaths

The remains of Jadon Higganbothan and Antoinetta McKoy were found behind by a plumber working in the backyard of a home in the 2600 block of Ashe Street earlier this month. Their bodies were buried plastic bags.

Four people - alleged cult leader 27-year-old Peter Moses Jr., Higganbothan's mother 25-year-old Vania Sisk, 40-year-old Lavada Quinzetta Harris and 40-year-old Larhonda Renee Smith - were indicted on murder charges in connection with McKoy's death.

Moses was also indicted on charges for Higganbothan's murder. Harris, Sisk and Smith have been indicted on one charge of accessory after the fact in his death.

Three others - 56-year-old Sheilda Evelyn Harris, 21-year-old P. Leonard Moses and 20-year-old Sheila Falisha Moses - were indicted on charges of accessory after the fact in McKoy's death.

McKoy and Higganbothan were both last seen alive last year. The Ashe Street home is located a few miles from another home on Pear Tree Lane where McKoy and Higganbothan lived with a cult group known as the "Black Hebrew Israelites."

ABC11 sources confirm the Ashe Street home was once the rental property of Moses' mother.

The plumber who found the bodies and called 911, told an operator that he uncovered something buried in a plastic bag after the homeowner placed a service call about what was assumed to be a sewage problem.

"We see something buried in a plastic bag ... it has a horrible smell ... and we don't think it's an animal or nothing, it seems like it could possibly be another human," the worker told the 911 operator.

Higganbothan's mother was arrested in April during a raid at a Durham home but posted bond. At that time, she was charged with misdemeanor marijuana possession. Sisk told police she last saw her son in Durham on February 20, when she left him with an acquaintance.

However, the last confirmed sighting of the 5-year-old was October 2010. McKoy was also reported missing in February and was last seen in early December 2010.

According to search warrants, a search of the Pear Tree Lane property in April turned up traces of blood, a spent bullet, and shell casings.

In addition to the murder charges, Moses faces charges that were filed in April. Those include one count of second-degree kidnapping, one count of assault by pointing a gun, one count of assault on a female, one count of communicating threats and failure to appear in court.

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