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The Latest: Official says motive in family’s deaths unclear

February 26, 2019

MORRISVILLE, Pa. (AP) — The Latest on a mother and daughter charged in the deaths of five relatives in suburban Philadelphia (all times local):

1:10 p.m.

Pennsylvania authorities say they’re no closer to determining a motive for a set of slayings that left five family members dead and a mother and daughter facing homicide charges.

Bucks County District Attorney Matthew Weintraub said Tuesday at a news conference that 19-year-old Dominique Decree is expected to be arraigned soon. Her mother, 45-year-old Shana Decree, was arraigned earlier Tuesday.

Authorities found Shana Decree’s 25-year-old daughter and 13-year-old son dead Monday alongside her sister Jamilla Campbell and Campbell’s twin 9-year-old daughters in the small Morrisville apartment they shared.

How they died isn’t clear. It also isn’t clear whether the mother and daughter yet have lawyers to speak for them.

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12:30 p.m.

Police say the teenage son of a woman found dead alongside four relatives in a Pennsylvania home was with friends in New Jersey.

Morrisville Borough Police Chief George McClay said Tuesday that Jamilla Campbell’s 17-year-old son, Joshua, was found staying with friends in Willingboro, New Jersey.

Bucks County District Attorney Matthew Weintraub has stressed that the teen isn’t a suspect in the slayings and that officials wanted to be sure he was safe.

Campbell was found dead alongside her twin 9-year-old daughters, her 13-year-old nephew and 25-year-old niece.

Campbell’s sister Shana Decree and niece Dominique Decree face homicide charges. Police have not released a motive or said how the victims died.

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10:30 a.m.

A mother and daughter charged with homicide in the deaths of five relatives, including three children, have told police that one of the victims helped with the killings.

Police in Morrisville, Pennsylvania, say Shana Decree and her 19-year-old daughter, Dominique Decree, were found in the apartment Monday acting disoriented. They were taken to the hospital where they were treated and interviewed by police.

An affidavit describing the charges says both women changed their stories while talking to police. It says they first described one to three unknown men committing the killings, before telling police they had killed several of the family members.

The documents say Shana Decree told police that everyone “wanted to die.” The women claimed 42-year-old Jamilla Campbell killed at least one of the children before she herself was choked to death.

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7:30 a.m.

Authorities say a Pennsylvania woman charged along with her teenage daughter in the deaths of five relatives, including three children, has been arraigned on murder charges.

The bodies were found Monday inside an apartment in suburban Philadelphia.

Bucks County District Attorney Matthew Weintraub says 45-year-old Shana S. Decree and 19-year-old Dominique Decree are charged with five counts of homicide and one count each of conspiracy.

Shana Decree was arraigned early Tuesday, while her daughter was expected to make her initial court appearance later in the day. The teen remains hospitalized.

It wasn’t clear if either woman has retained an attorney.

The victims include Shana Decree’s two other children, ages 13 and 25; her 45-year-old sister; and the sister’s 9-year-old twin daughters.

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