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Jan Pawek Pietrzak, 24 and his wife, Quiana Faye Jenkins-Pietrzak, 26 were found murdered in their French Valley home. Jury selection has begun for Marines accused in the  rape and murders.
Jan Pawek Pietrzak, 24 and his wife, Quiana Faye Jenkins-Pietrzak, 26 were found murdered in their French Valley home. Jury selection has begun for Ma...
The coroners van backs into the driveway of the house that two dead  bodies were discovered on Bermuda Court in French Valley.
The coroners van backs into the driveway of the house that two dead bodies were discovered on Bermuda Court in French Valley.
Sheriff investigators as well as Temecula Police stand behind Police tape on Bermuda Court in in the Kona Road development of  French Valley. The entire street was blocked off for investigation of two people who were found dead at a house on the street by law enforcement.
Sheriff investigators as well as Temecula Police stand behind Police tape on Bermuda Court in in the Kona Road development of French Valley. The enti...
Crime scene investigators search the drive of a house on Bermuda Court in  the Kona Road development of  French Valley for clues Wednesday afternoon. The entire street was blocked off for investigation of two people who were found dead at a house on the street by law enforcement.
Crime scene investigators search the drive of a house on Bermuda Court in the Kona Road development of French Valley for clues Wednesday afternoon. ...
An unidentified resident of the Kona Road development in French Valley looks past the police tape that flanks both ends of Bermuda Court. One of the houses on the street was the scene of the double homicide and investigators had the street shut down all day to conduct investigations.
An unidentified resident of the Kona Road development in French Valley looks past the police tape that flanks both ends of Bermuda Court. One of the h...

Three of four Marines convicted of first-degree murder for killing Sergeant and his wife


Tuesday, March 12th, 2013
Issue 11, Volume 17.
Paul Young
Special to the Valley News


RIVERSIDE - Three Marines were convicted today of first-degree murder and other charges in the slayings of a young sergeant and his bride during a home invasion robbery at the couple's French Valley residence.

Jurors must now decide whether to recommend a death sentence or life in prison without the possibility of parole for Kevin Darnell Cox, 25, Emrys Justin John, 23, and Tyrone Miller, 25.

A fourth defendant is awaiting trial.

An eight-woman, four-man jury deliberated less than two days before finding Cox guilty of the Oct. 15, 2008, slayings of 24-year-old Janek Pietrzak and his 26-year-old wife, Quiana Faye Jenkins-Pietrzak.

A separate eight-man, four-woman jury deliberated one day before convicting John and Miller of the crimes.

Both panels also found true special circumstance allegations of multiple murders and that the killings occurred in the course of a robbery and a burglary. Miller was additionally convicted of forced sexual penetration with a foreign object, and John's jury found true a sentence-enhancing allegation of discharging a firearm to produce great bodily injury.

Cox's penalty trial will get underway Monday morning, while Miller's and John's penalty phase will begin in the afternoon.

Cox, clad in a brown suit and standing next to his attorneys, showed little reaction as the verdicts were read, though appeared to be listening intently. After jurors left the room, his gaze fell to the floor and he prodded his chin with his forefingers.

John, dressed in a beige suit, and Miller, wearing a blue T-shirt and casual pants, remained seated as the verdicts were read by Riverside County Superior Court Judge Christian Thierbach. Both men stared straight ahead.

The fourth defendant, 25-year-old Kesaun Kedron Sykes, is slated to be tried in August.

Deputy District Attorney Daniel DeLimon called the defendants "Marines by day and criminals by night." According to DeLimon, the four Marines wanted to get inside the Pietrzaks' two-story house at 31319 Bermuda Ave. because of greed -- and much more.

"This was about having the power to see the fear in somebody's eyes. It's about taking pleasure in the sexual humiliation of a woman and tormenting her husband by making him watch," the prosecutor said.

DeLimon quoted one of the defendants describing the 90-minute ransacking of the victims' property and abuse of the couple as "party time."

DeLimon said Cox attempted to minimize his participation in the slayings. But the statements he made to friends afterward and the testimony of Miller revealed that Cox was an active perpetrator, according to the prosecutor.

He said all of the men pummeled Pietrzak, while Cox was delegated with the responsibility of binding the couple to immobilize and silence them. Cox also planted false evidence in an attempt to throw off authorities, directing his associates where to paint epithets such as the "n" word to make it appear as though the crime was racially motivated, according to DeLimon.

Quiana was black, and her husband of 68 days, a native of Poland, was white.

Miller testified that he was displeased with Pietrzak because the sergeant had told the lance corporal that his chances of being promoted to corporal were nil.

Cox told investigators that he rang the doorbell twice shortly after 1 a.m., and Pietrzak came downstairs in a T-shirt and boxer shorts, deactivated his house alarm and opened the front door. The defendants, armed with shotguns, beat the young sergeant into submission, DeLimon alleged.

According to the prosecutor, Miller and Sykes stripped Quiana and violated her sexually. John shot the victims execution-style with a 9mm handgun.

All of the men served in a helicopter maintenance squadron at Camp Pendleton.


Cox convicted of first-degree murder in deaths of French Valley Marine and his wife

RIVERSIDE - One of four Marines charged in the killings of a young sergeant and his bride during a home invasion robbery of the couple's French Valley residence was convicted today of two counts of first-degree murder.

Jurors must now decide whether to recommend a death sentence or life imprisonment without the possibility of parole for Kevin Darnell Cox, 25.

The eight-woman, four-man jury deliberated less than two days before finding Cox guilty of the Oct. 15, 2008, murders of 24-year-old Janek Pietrzak and his 26-year-old wife, Quiana Faye Jenkins-Pietrzak. The panel also found true special circumstance allegations of multiple murders and killing in the course of a robbery.

Jurors acquitted Cox of a sentence-enhancing allegation of forced sexual penetration with a foreign object.

Cox's penalty trial will get underway Monday and is expected to conclude before the end of next week.

The defendant, clad in a brown suit and standing next to his attorneys, showed little reaction as the verdicts were read, though appeared to be listening intently. After jurors left the room, his gaze fell to the floor and he prodded his chin with his forefingers.

Jurors reached their decision on Monday, but the findings were placed under seal until today by Riverside County Superior Court Judge Christian Thierbach, who did not want the verdicts published until closing arguments had wrapped up in the trial of Cox's co-defendants, 25-year-old Tyrone Miller and 23-year-old Emrys Justin John.

A separate jury began reviewing evidence in their trial on Tuesday.

All three of the Camp Pendleton-based Marines, along with 25-year-old Kesaun Kedron Sykes, are charged exactly the same. Sykes is slated to be tried in August.

Deputy District Attorney Daniel DeLimon called the defendants "Marines by day and criminals by night." According to DeLimon, the four Marines wanted to get inside the Pietrzaks' two-story house at 31319 Bermuda Ave. because of greed -- and much more.

"This was about having the power to see the fear in somebody's eyes. It's about taking pleasure in the sexual humiliation of a woman and tormenting her husband by making him watch," the prosecutor said.

DeLimon quoted one of the defendants describing the 90-minute ransacking of the victims' property and abuse of the couple as "party time."

DeLimon said Cox attempted to minimize his participation in the slayings. But the statements he made to friends afterward and the testimony of Miller revealed that Cox was an active perpetrator, according to the prosecutor.

He said Cox helped pummel Pietrzak and was delegated with the responsibility of binding the couple to immobilize and silence them. Cox also planted false evidence in an attempt to throw off authorities, directing his associates where to paint epithets such as the "n" word to make it appear as though the crime was racially motivated, according to DeLimon.

Quiana was black, and her husband, a native of Poland, was white.

Cox's attorney, Ryan Markson, argued that his client was a mere follower and went into the crime not realizing what he was getting into.

The attorney said the prosecution was stretching in making Cox, a private, appear sophisticated enough to think up the bogus racial component of the crime.

"This was not about what Kevin Cox wanted; this was about Tyrone Miller wanting that extra stripe and being told by Sgt. Pietrzak that he wasn't going to get it," Markson said, referring to a conversation between Miller and Pietrzak the day before the killings.

Miller testified that he was displeased with Pietrzak because the sergeant had told the lance corporal that his chances of being promoted to corporal were nil.

Cox admitted to investigators that he rang the doorbell twice shortly after 1 a.m., and Pietrzak came downstairs in a T-shirt and boxer shorts, deactivated his house alarm and opened the front door. The defendants, armed with shotguns, beat the young sergeant into submission, DeLimon alleged.

According to the prosecutor, Miller and Sykes stripped Quiana and violated her sexually. John shot the victims execution-style with a 9mm handgun, DeLimon alleged.

All of the men served in a helicopter maintenance squadron at Camp Pendleton.


RIVERSIDE - One of four Marines charged in the slayings of a young sergeant and his wife during a home invasion robbery of the couple's French Valley residence was convicted today of two counts of first-degree murder.

Kevin Darnell Cox, 25, could be sentenced to death for the Oct. 15, 2008, killings of 24-year-old Janek Pietrzak and his 26-year-old wife, Quiana Faye Jenkins-Pietrzak.

An eight-woman, four-man jury deliberated less than two days before finding Cox guilty of the murder counts, as well as special circumstance allegations of taking multiple lives in the same crime, killing in the course of a robbery and killing during the commission of a serious felony.

Cox's penalty trial will get underway Monday.


Defendant: I feel "completely destroyed inside" about couple's deaths

RIVERSIDE - A Marine accused of masterminding a home-invasion robbery during which a fellow Marine and his wife were slain testified today that he was heavily intoxicated at the time and felt "completely and utterly destroyed" after coming to grips with what he and his co-defendants had done.

"I tried not to think about it later," said Tyrone Miller, 25. "I remember standing there with a beer in my hand and thinking, 'Man, this really happened."'

Miller, Kevin Darnell Cox, Emrys Justin John and Kesaun Kedron Sykes could face the death penalty if convicted in the Oct. 15, 2008, shooting deaths of 24-year-old Janek Pietrzak and his 26-year-old wife, Quiana Faye Jenkins- Pietrzak.

Miller, Cox, 25, and John, 23, are being tried together. Sykes, 25, has an August trial date.

Miller, who took the stand in his own defense after the prosecution closed its case, denied allegations pointing to him as the ringleader of the deadly home invasion robbery. He testified that he couldn't recall many of the details because of the amount of alcohol he had consumed prior to the crime.

Miller said he drank several beers and part of a bottle of brandy, as well as vodka.

"I remember helping bind up and tape Sergeant Pietrzak," the defendant said. "I didn't want him to keep fighting and follow us out of the house."

Miller said that after the killings, he and his co-defendants drove to the apartment of a woman with whom one of the Marines was romantically involved. He said as the men sat around drinking beer in the predawn hours, a cold reality washed over him.

"'How did this just happen, I was thinking," Miller testified. "You automatically feel bad. It's a kind of remorse and sadness you can't describe. I was crushed, completely and utterly destroyed inside. It wasn't a game. Two lives were gone."

Under cross-examination, Miller acknowledged being displeased with Pietrzak because the young sergeant had told the lance corporal a day earlier that his chances of being promoted to corporal were nil.

Miller would not say that Pietrzak's statement was motivation for the deadly home invasion. However, the defendant said all of the 15 or so Marines in Pietrzak's helicopter maintenance squad at Camp Pendleton had heard the victim "brag" about his belongings, including a new house and car.

"He was living the good life," Miller told an investigator. "He was a cocky little guy."

All of the defendants are charged with first-degree murder and special circumstance allegations of killing during the course of a robbery and taking multiple lives in the same crime.

The trial got underway on April 8.

Riverside County Deputy District Attorney Daniel DeLimon alleges the defendants planned and executed the killings together and shared equal responsibility.

Cox allegedly admitted to sheriff's investigators that he and his co- defendants initially tried to find an unlocked back entrance to the victims' two-story French Valley residence at 31319 Bermuda Ave., but couldn't, opting instead to simply ring the front door bell.

According to Cox's story, he rang the bell twice shortly after 1 a.m., and Pietrzak came downstairs in a T-shirt and boxer shorts.

According to DeLimon, Pietrzak was armed with a knife when he deactivated his house alarm and opened the door. The defendants, armed with shotguns, jabbed the barrels into the victim, moving him back from the door and pummeling him, DeLimon alleged.

For close to 90 minutes, the men ransacked the home, packing stolen items into suitcases and loading them into John's Jeep Cherokee, according to the prosecution.

DeLimon showed the jury photos of the victims, bound and gagged on the living room floor. Quiana's eyes and mouth were wrapped with tape, giving her an appearance that Cox told investigators reminded him of a "mummy."

According to DeLimon, Miller and Sykes stripped the helpless woman and used a vibrator they found in the couple's bathroom to violate her sexually.

Miller allegedly ordered John to execute the victims using a 9mm Beretta handgun, which he did, shooting each of them twice in the head, using cushions to suppress the gunfire, according to DeLimon.

He alleged the defendants attempted to throw authorities off by making it appear as though the slayings had been racially motivated, painting racial epithets throughout the house. Quiana was black, and her husband white, a native of Poland.


Statements of Marines Accused in Slayings to be Played in Court

RIVERSIDE - The videotaped police statements of three men accused in the slayings of a Marine sergeant and his wife will be played tomorrow for jurors.

Kevin Darnell Cox, 25, Emrys Justin John, 23, and Tyrone Miller, 25, could each face the death penalty if convicted in the Oct. 15, 2008, deaths of 24-year-old Janek Pietrzak and his 26-year-old wife, Quiana Faye Jenkins- Pietrzak.

There are two separate juries -- one for Cox, and another for John and Miller -- hearing evidence in the case. A fourth defendant, 25-year-old Kesaun Kedron Sykes, will be tried in August.

All of the men are charged with first-degree murder and special circumstance allegations of killing during the course of a robbery and taking multiple lives in the same crime.

The trial began April 8.

Riverside County Deputy District Attorney Daniel DeLimon alleged the defendants planned and executed the killings together and shared equal responsibility.

Janek Pietrzak was a helicopter mechanic at Camp Pendleton and worked with John and Miller, according to DeLimon. It was unclear why the defendants Advertisement
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allegedly targeted the newlyweds. DeLimon said the men later told associates they went to the house expecting to find "money and guns."

Cox allegedly admitted to sheriff's investigators that he and his codefendants initially tried to find an unlocked back entrance to the two-story French Valley residence at 31319 Bermuda Ave., but couldn't, opting instead to simply ring the front door bell.

According to Cox's story, he rang the bell twice shortly after 1 a.m., and Pietrzak came downstairs in a T-shirt and boxer shorts.

According to DeLimon, Pietrzak was armed with a knife when he deactivated his house alarm and opened the door. The defendants, armed with shotguns, jabbed the barrels into the victim, moving him back from the door and pummeling him, DeLimon alleged.

For close to 90 minutes, the men ransacked the home, packing stolen items into suitcases and loading them into John's Jeep Cherokee, according to the prosecution.

DeLimon showed pictures of the victims, bound and gagged on the living room floor. Quiana's eyes and mouth were wrapped with tape, giving her an appearance that Cox told investigators reminded him of a "mummy." According to DeLimon, Miller and Sykes stripped the helpless woman and violated her sexually.

Miller, the ring leader, allegedly ordered John to execute the victims using a 9mm Beretta handgun, which he did, shooting each of them twice in the head, using cushions to suppress the gunfire, according to DeLimon.

He alleged the defendants attempted to throw authorities off by making it appear as though the slayings had been racially motivated, painting racial epithets throughout the house. Quiana was black, and her husband white, a native of Poland.

Fellow Camp Pendleton Marines who either overhead the defendants bragging about the killings or were told directly passed the information to authorities, leading to an investigation, during which numerous items of evidence -- including the dead couple's wedding bands -- were seized at the defendants' residences, according to the prosecution.

All of the men are being held without bail at the Southwest Detention Center in Murrieta.


Prosecutor: Marines Carried out Killings of Sergeant and his bride 'As a Group'

Paul Young

Special to the Valley News

RIVERSIDE - A Marine sergeant and his bride were murdered in their French Valley residence during a home invasion perpetrated by four members of the same squadron to which the man belonged, a prosecutor told a jury today.

"They all invaded this house and committed the robbery as a group," Riverside County Deputy District Attorney Daniel DeLimon said in his opening statement. "They committed these killings as a group."

Kevin Darnell Cox, 25, Emrys Justin John, 23, and Tyrone Miller, 25, could each face the death penalty if convicted in the Oct. 15, 2008, slayings of 24-year-old Janek Pietrzak and his 26-year-old wife, Quiana Faye Jenkins- Pietrzak.

A fourth defendant, 25-year-old Kesaun Kedron Sykes, will be tried in August.

"This young couple was executed inside a house they had just purchased," DeLimon said. "They had been married 68 days. They were hog-tied, bound at the hands and feet, and shot execution-style. Quiana was sexually assaulted in front of her husband."

There are two separate juries hearing evidence in the case -- one for Cox, whose attorneys were expected to make their opening statement on Tuesday, and another for John and Miller.

DeLimon told Cox's jury that the defendant left behind "numerous" clues pointing to his culpability, which he also later confessed to sheriff's investigators.

The defendant's shoe prints were located inside the victims' residence, and his then-girlfriend, Melissa Buck, received Quiana's wedding band and other jewelry as gifts, according to DeLimon.

"He may try to claim he was just a lookout for the others," the prosecutor said. "But there was substantial participation by this defendant."

Janek Pietrzak was a helicopter mechanic at Camp Pendleton and worked with John and Miller, according to DeLimon. It was unclear why the defendants allegedly targeted the newlyweds, though DeLimon said the men later told associates they went to the house expecting to find "money and guns."

Cox told sheriff's investigators that he and his co-defendants initially tried to find an unlocked back entrance to the two-story residence at 31319 Bermuda Ave., but couldn't, opting instead to simply ring the front door bell.

According to Cox's story, he rang the bell twice shortly after 1 a.m., and Pietrzak came downstairs in a T-shirt and boxer shorts. Cox told investigators that he stepped back and let his co-defendants confront the young Marine.

According to DeLimon, Pietrzak was armed with a knife when he deactivated his house alarm and opened the door. The defendants, armed with shotguns, jabbed the barrels into the victim, moving him back from the door, at which point they began to pummel him, DeLimon alleged.

He said bruises in the form of shoe impressions on Pietrzak's back indicate he was kicked and stomped once his attackers got him on the ground.

For close to 90 minutes, the men ransacked the home, packing stolen items into suitcases and loading them into John's Jeep Cherokee, according to the prosecution.

DeLimon showed photos of the victims, bound and gagged on the living room floor. Quiana's eyes and mouth were wrapped with tape, giving her an appearance that Cox told investigators reminded him of a "mummy." According to DeLimon, Miller and Sykes stripped the helpless woman and assaulted her sexually.

Miller, the ring leader, ordered John to execute the victims using a 9mm Beretta handgun, which he did, shooting each of them twice in the head, using cushions to suppress the gunfire, DeLimon alleged.

The defendants attempted to throw authorities off by making it appear as though the slayings had been racially motivated, painting the words "Nigger Lover" in several places throughout the house, even on Pietrzak's body, the prosecutor alleged.

An unsuccessful attempt was also made to set the house ablaze by igniting materials in the kitchen and leaving the gas from the stove running, DeLimon said.

Over the ensuing two weeks, fellow Marines who allegedly overheard the foursome bragging about the killings called the sheriff's department, agreeing to meet with detectives away from the Marine base for fear of retaliation, the prosecutor said.

He said investigators obtained search warrants for the defendants' various living quarters and recovered almost all of the stolen property.

In Miller's Camp Pendleton home, investigators found four spent 9mm bullet cartridges and two 9mm pistols, as well as Pietrzak's dress blue Marine uniform, according to the prosecution.

The trial is expected to last a month, with a penalty phase to follow if the defendants are found guilty of first-degree murder and jurors find true special circumstance allegations of killing in the course of a robbery and taking more than one life in the same crime. The defendants also face a sentence-enhancing allegation that a sexual assault occurred during the robbery.

All of the men are being held without bail at the Southwest Detention Center in Murrieta.

***Previous Story***

Opening statements scheduled for trial of three Marines accused in killing of sergeant and new wife during home invasion

RIVERSIDE - Opening statements are scheduled on Monday for the trial of three Marines accused of killing a sergeant and his wife during a home invasion robbery at the couple's French Valley residence, the District Attorney's Office announced today. Kevin Darnell Cox, 25, Emrys Justin John, 23, and Tyrone Miller, 25, could each face the death penalty if convicted in the Oct. 15, 2008, slayings of 24-year-old Janek Pietrzak and his 26-year-old wife, Quiana Faye Jenkins- Pietrzak.

The trial will start at 9 a.m. at the Riverside Hall of Justice. There will be three separate juries, one for each defendant. Trial proceedings could stretch well into June, according to the Riverside County District Attorney's Office. A fourth defendant, 25-year-old Kesaun Kedron Sykes, will be tried separately and has a trial-setting conference in August. According to Deputy District Attorney Dan DeLimon, Sykes' case was severed from his codefendants because having four juries in one courtroom was considered untenable given the space limitations.

Each of the defendants is charged with two counts of first-degree murder, with special circumstance allegations of killing in the course of a robbery and taking more than one life in the same crime. There is also a sentence-enhancing allegation that a sexual assault occurred during the robbery. According to testimony from a 2009 preliminary hearing, the Camp Pendleton-based Marines forced their way into the victims' two-story home at 31319 Bermuda Ave. in French Valley in the middle of the night, after knocking on the door and pushing past Pietrzak when he answered.

The defendants were allegedly armed with handguns and quickly gained the couple's compliance. Pietrzak served with the men in the same unit. His wife was a nurse at the base. They had only been married three months. Sheriff's investigators allege the defendants beat, bound and gagged the couple before ransacking the residence, stealing jewelry and other valuables and stuffing them into suitcases that were loaded into John's Jeep Cherokee.

Cox and Sykes allegedly confessed their parts in the deadly attack, each pointing fingers at the other, according to investigators. The pair allegedly cut off Quiana's nightgown and sexually assaulted her on a table with various objects while her husband was forced to watch, according to testimony.

A fellow Camp Pendleton Marine, Justin Weissinger, testified that Miller and John detailed their involvement in the slayings during a conversation with him. Weissinger alleged the men said they positioned the victims on a sofa and shot both in the head twice, using cushions to suppress the gunfire. Why the newlyweds were targeted has not been confirmed, though there were racial overtones. Pietrzak was white, of Polish descent, and Quiana, a San Bernardino native, was black.

Some of the items taken during the robbery were later recovered from the defendants' living quarters, according to investigators. Cox's girlfriend testified that he brought two recently fired pistols into her Fallbrook apartment the morning after the slayings.

In 2011, Sykes' attorneys claimed he was mentally unfit to stand trial, and a jury was convened to determine whether he was competent. After deliberating less than two hours, the panel ruled he was fit to stand trial. The men are all being held without bail at the Southwest Detention Center in Murrieta.


Jury selection begins for trial of Marines accused of killing French Valley couple

RIVERSIDE - Jury selection got under way today for the trial of three Marines accused of killing a sergeant and his wife during a home invasion robbery at the couple's French Valley residence. Kevin Darnell Cox, 25, Emrys Justin John, 23, and Tyrone Miller, 25, could each face the death penalty if convicted in the Oct. 15, 2008, slayings of 24-year-old Janek Pietrzak and his 26-year-old wife, Quiana Faye Jenkins- Pietrzak. Riverside County Superior Court Judge Christian Thierbach summoned dozens of prospective jurors to his courtroom at the Riverside Hall of Justice for screening as to their availability. Actual juror interviews will not be conducted until nearer the end of the month. There will be three separate juries -- one for each defendant -- so testimony in the case is not expected to begin until April 8. Trial proceedings could stretch well into June, according to the District Attorney's Office. A fourth defendant, 25-year-old Kesaun Kedron Sykes, will be tried separately in August. According to Deputy District Attorney Dan DeLimon, Sykes' case was severed from his codefendants because having four juries in one courtroom was considered untenable given the space limitations. Each of the defendants is charged with two counts of first-degree murder, with special circumstance allegations of killing in the course of a robbery and taking more than one life in the same crime. There is also a sentence-enhancing allegation that a sexual assault occurred during the robbery. According to testimony from a 2009 preliminary hearing, the Camp Pendleton-based Marines forced their way into the victims' two-story home at 31319 Bermuda Ave. in the middle of the night, after knocking on the door and pushing past Pietrzak when he answered. The defendants were allegedly armed with handguns and quickly gained the couple's compliance. Pietrzak served with the men in the same unit. His wife was a nurse at the base. They had only been married three months. Sheriff's investigators allege the defendants beat, bound and gagged the couple before ransacking the residence, stealing jewelry and other valuables and stuffing them into suitcases that were loaded into John's Jeep Cherokee. Cox and Sykes allegedly confessed their parts in the deadly attack, each pointing fingers at the other, according to investigators. The pair allegedly cut off Quiana's nightgown and sexually assaulted her on a table with various objects while her husband was forced to watch, according to testimony. A fellow Camp Pendleton Marine, Justin Weissinger, testified that Miller and John detailed their involvement in the slayings during a conversation with him. Weissinger alleged the men said they positioned the victims on a sofa and shot both in the head twice, using cushions to suppress the gunfire. Why the newlyweds were targeted has not been confirmed, though there were racial overtones. Pietrzak was white, of Polish descent, and Quiana, a San Bernardino native, was black. Some of the items taken during the robbery were later recovered from the defendants' living quarters, according to investigators. Cox's girlfriend testified that he brought two recently fired pistols into her Fallbrook apartment the morning after the slayings. In 2011, Sykes' attorneys claimed he was mentally unfit to stand trial, and a jury was convened to determine whether he was competent. After deliberating less than two hours, the panel ruled he was fit to stand trial. The men are all being held without bail at the Southwest Detention Center in Murrieta. To read a previous story, to: http://www.myvalleynews.com/story/33817/


 

41 comments

Comment Profile ImageN.L.Hoskins
Comment #1 | Wednesday, Mar 13, 2013 at 7:08 am
This was a racist crime not reported by the media. All suspects are black they killed a fellow white Marine, because he married a black woman.
Comment Profile ImageCheck it out
Comment #2 | Wednesday, Mar 13, 2013 at 12:02 pm
Should have been a HATE crime. Why wasn't it?
Comment Profile ImageERIN
Comment #3 | Wednesday, Mar 13, 2013 at 2:16 pm
Guilty on all charges with special circumstances. They should receive a special pass to the head on the line for the "chair".
Comment Profile ImageNot a chance
Comment #4 | Wednesday, Mar 13, 2013 at 10:57 pm
The death penalty has died in California. There will be no justice in this case or any other capital cases.
Comment Profile ImagePessimistic
Comment #5 | Thursday, Mar 14, 2013 at 6:06 am
You beat me to it, N.L.Hoskins. Thanks for pointing it out. When it is black on white (or whatever) they never report it as the infamous "hate crime". Why do you suppose that is? DUH! No need for anyone to answer it...

Going to trial FOUR YEARS after the preliminary hearing, and FOUR JURIES? WTH x2? And never mind how long it has been since these senseless murders were actually committed! What a waste of space in County lock up and monetary resources expended on these pieces of complete garbage!

And you are right, Not a chance - there isn't a chance in Hades the ultimate punishment will be carried out in this pathetic State!
Comment Profile ImagePreston
Comment #6 | Friday, Mar 15, 2013 at 9:54 am
@Pessimistic
The reason why punishment will not be carried out in this pathetic State (as you call it) is because We the People voted to be soft on crime. It is not the fault of the Government (of a State or Country) when the people have instructed it on how to operate. I for one am sick of how the people have abandoned their duty to properly manage their government and become a bunch of apathetic morons but until the majority of voters suffer the consequences of their actions things will not change. We were told what would happen by a few outstanding individuals that ran for office and were defeated. For some reason we did not care or believe, well believe now. The utter foolishness of the people is the reason we do not have more quality people running for office, who would want a thankless job that puts their entire family at risk.
Comment Profile Imagemanuela edwards
Comment #7 | Sunday, Mar 31, 2013 at 2:44 am
if anybody wishes to speak their peace of mind just remember how do everybody thinks what the family feels in this case....i or me and my husband should also be able to speak as quiana and janek was our niece and nephew....they was an adorable couple and very much in love and and there was not a bad thought on either their minds.....
rest in peace
quiana and janek
we love and miss our little angels alot
Comment Profile ImageSB
Comment #8 | Monday, Apr 8, 2013 at 11:28 am
What a beautiful, sweet looking couple. This is so sad. My condolences to their family.
Comment Profile ImageCriminology 101
Comment #9 | Monday, Apr 8, 2013 at 7:48 pm
This was a hate crime and nobody had the guts to charge them with it. These evil men hated the woman for marrying a white man.
Comment Profile ImageUnknown
Comment #10 | Tuesday, Apr 9, 2013 at 7:56 pm
My condolences to their family, For the animals that committed this crime, they are cowards and punk. To confess and then blame each other, say I didn’t participated, well get real once you got into the car for the ride. You’re a part of it, nor did any one of you cowards try to stop it, Now be men and take your punishment, DEATH, have fun in the big house, while waiting for your day in hell.
Comment Profile ImageRob
Comment #11 | Wednesday, Apr 10, 2013 at 11:14 am
I remember when this happened, we live in French Valley and my wife and I who are an interracial couple, immediately went on the alert. This is such as sickening and horrible crimes and these perpetrators are of the lowest human kind, I won't say animals because animals don't do such things. May they burn in hell.
Comment Profile ImageTo Manuela Edwards
Comment #12 | Saturday, Apr 13, 2013 at 10:28 pm
My heartfelt deepest sympathies to you and your family. I can't imagine what you must be going through. I pray that justice will be done. Your niece and nephew were very good people.
Comment Profile ImageMike in Murrieta
Comment #13 | Thursday, Apr 18, 2013 at 12:38 am
If this crime occurred in Texas, these scumbags would be nothing more then ashes on their mommies fireplace mantle, by now. Anyway, I almost forgot about this story. It's sad. Pietrzak should have done what I know I would have done. If my door bell rings, or my dog barks at 1:00am. I go straight for my shotgun!! This was just too vicious for these guys not to fry!!!
Comment Profile ImageMarine Mom
Comment #14 | Thursday, Apr 18, 2013 at 9:51 am
What a disgrace to the USMC. Shame on all of them.
Comment Profile Imagegrunt
Comment #15 | Thursday, Apr 18, 2013 at 11:36 am
Hate crime for sure- "they tried to make it seem racially motivated by..". The next time a white guy is charged with a hate crime he should use the same excuse ..oh, wait, we live in the world of Eric Holder where Black intimidation of white voters is not a crime, so of course blacks killing a white man and his black wife could not be a hate crime, regardless of what was written.
Comment Profile ImagePreston
Comment #16 | Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 7:49 am
What are we accomplishing by putting a label on this crime. Call it what you like, the outcome is the same and the punishment should be harsh and swift -- I certainly would not spend another dime on the defendants or give any contemplation as to their feelings.
Comment Profile Imageunbelievable
Comment #17 | Thursday, May 16, 2013 at 10:59 am
Glad the military is cooperating with civilian authorities and discharging these cowards. They are a disgrace to the human race. "He was a cocky little guy?" Are you freaking kidding me, How a person could rationalize raping, torturing, and beating a beautiful good couple like this because they are jealous of his "good life" and material possessions.

To these horrid murderers. Obviously you chickens thought you somehow deserved what this couple had worked for. THEY EARNED every penny they made, and THEY BOUGHT THE THINGS THEY HAD WITH HARD EARNED MONEY. It's called integrity, work ethics, and being of good moral character.

I hope these SOB"S don't get any leniency for their "newly acquired sudden alcohol syndrome." No sympathy-I hope the prison inmates take care of these punks, so the taxpayers don't waste another dime. PUT THEM IN GENERAL POP OR WITH THE MOST VIOLENT OFFENDERS! No PC for these wussies.
Comment Profile ImageAlex
Comment #18 | Wednesday, Jun 5, 2013 at 12:18 am
I went to Dulaney High School with Emrys John he was a nice guy we use to walk home from school together from 2006-2008. Everyday after school the 4 of us walked through the golf course stopped inside the store and got drinks on the way home. We talked about everything mostly video games and Emrys never mentioned one word of violence or even cursed. I'm 100 % certain that There's no way John pulled the trigger he was too much of a wuss, a nerdy type liked to read comic books and was on the wrestling team. I know for a fact John went into the house thinking they were gonna talk to him not kill them. Those guys blamed John because they knew he we be too scared to snitch on them. It makes me sick to my stomach to hear John being blamed for this he was one of the nicest and honest guys i've ever known.
Comment Profile ImageLee
Comment #19 | Wednesday, Jun 5, 2013 at 3:46 pm
Immoral behavior breeds immoral behavior.
Comment Profile ImageDisgusted
Comment #20 | Wednesday, Jun 5, 2013 at 8:46 pm
Oh geez Lee, shut the ____ up!
Comment Profile Image4 years in Fallbrook
Comment #21 | Wednesday, Jun 5, 2013 at 10:44 pm
Marines are made up of all types of people. Some bad people make it in, some good people go bad while in. The family's and the world, lost two fine people. The guilty men won't be able to hurt anyone again.
Comment Profile ImageHuh
Comment #22 | Thursday, Jun 6, 2013 at 9:34 am
@Lee
How the heck do you know their parents were immoral? What a jerk.
Comment Profile ImageDirty Marines
Comment #23 | Thursday, Jun 6, 2013 at 10:23 am
This is the crappy society for you. Our "security" for a well state of being is really the enemy in my opinion.
Comment Profile ImageEmrys cousin
Comment #24 | Thursday, Jun 6, 2013 at 11:45 am
Emry's is my cousin and he wasn't raised to be a murderer. He is a intelligent, well mannered guy that wanted to fit in.. Now I'm not saying he was a angel because if he was he wouldn't be in this situation. But I know without a doubt that he didn't pull the trigger. He is the fall guy because he wanted to be accepted.
Comment Profile ImageLee = broken record
Comment #25 | Thursday, Jun 6, 2013 at 12:23 pm
Lee = broken record with that "Imorral" comment. Come up with a new catch-phrase Lee.
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Comment Profile Image@24
Comment #26 | Thursday, Jun 6, 2013 at 2:57 pm
Gee, what a way to "fit in" and be a team player, and take the life of two innocent people. What a stand up guy Emry is.
Comment Profile ImageChad Baines
Comment #27 | Friday, Jun 7, 2013 at 10:35 am
This crime took place just before the 2008 election and the DA withheld details for fear it would go national and impact the election. Nice young couple murdered by jealous racists.
Comment Profile ImageMe
Comment #28 | Friday, Jun 7, 2013 at 10:56 am
Why is every other news source in San Diego reporting about all the arrests (many of them marines) for theft, receiving stolen property, and other crimes in that huge Sting?
Comment Profile Imagegrunt
Comment #29 | Friday, Jun 7, 2013 at 9:44 pm
Chad, I am no obama fan, but come on - one of several hundred black on white killings (in a little town of Fallbrook) have an effect on the election?
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Comment Profile Imagegrunt
Comment #30 | Friday, Jun 7, 2013 at 9:45 pm
Also, our DA is a conservative - she would NOT hide something to protect Obama; look for conspires higher up, IRS, DOJ NSA
Comment Profile ImagePreston
Comment #31 | Saturday, Jun 8, 2013 at 6:51 am
@ Emrys cousin,
You say your cousin was an intelligent, well mannered guy but ....
Did you miss the part where they were were armed with shot guns, bound and gagged the victims, sexually assaulted one, shot them execution-style with a 9mm handgun and then were overheard bragging about the killings?
Comment Profile ImageMike W
Comment #32 | Sunday, Jun 9, 2013 at 11:18 am
Where did these guys learn to kill innocent people, Iraq, Afghanistan ? So it's okay to do it over there but not here ? Pretty good chance this had nothing to do with race and a lot to do with filling a young kids head with promises and lies and then dumping him in a warzone for no good reason at all..This is clearly a product of senseless illegal wars, suicides in the military are at an all time high because of it.. Nothing will change until we have the guts to admit that these wars have absolutely nothing to do with defending freedom and democracy and everything to do with clearing the way for multinational banks and their corporations to extract resources that do not belong to them. Just have a good look at our foreign policy and who determines it for clues.

My heart goes out to all the families involved.
Comment Profile ImageDisgusted
Comment #33 | Sunday, Jun 9, 2013 at 11:53 am
There is no evidence that I have ever heard that these individuals were even in Afghanistan. Weren't they in the motor pool or something? This was a HATE crime! They were upset because an African American woman married a white man. If 3 white marines had murdered an African American man because he married a white woman there would be hell to pay and we all know it. Hate is hate. People like Mike W, Lee and Me, can argue all they want that is because they were taught to "kill" by the evil military, but it still comes down to the fact that they were mad and jealous. Period.
Comment Profile ImageDH
Comment #34 | Wednesday, Jun 12, 2013 at 2:34 pm
So many people saying Hate, you are so far off the mark because of the Hate in you. Marines don't Hate one another no matter the race; now JEALOUSY is where this came from! You have a beautiful woman with the man that made her happy and were in love, making all the right choices. Here are 4 JEALOUS MARINES, who took and killed, MAY THEY LIVE OUT THEIR LIVES IN PRISON and have to deal with a MARINE behind bars whom is his brother's keeper.
Comment Profile ImageDisgusted
Comment #35 | Wednesday, Jun 12, 2013 at 3:56 pm
@DH: So you think they killed their fellow marine because they loved him? Yes, they were jealous. They were jealous that a white man married a black woman. That makes this a hate crime, as much as if 3 white men had killed a black man for marrying a white woman. Hate is wrong, no matter who the hater is! I hate no one. This whole story sickens me and makes me sad.
Comment Profile Imagegrunt
Comment #36 | Wednesday, Jun 12, 2013 at 9:56 pm
@ lee - lee, heard about CIVILIANS
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Comment Profile Imagegrunt
Comment #37 | Wednesday, Jun 12, 2013 at 9:59 pm
killing people, so all the evil you say about Marines you must feel about them. @Mike W. same thing, what about the civilians that kill? were they in combat too? Get real people, the Marines are drawn from society; most become better citizens, some stay true to their roots and remain criminals. Just like what ever it is you do, most are good people, a few are or turn bad.
Comment Profile ImageMike W
Comment #38 | Wednesday, Jun 12, 2013 at 10:03 pm
"So many people saying Hate, you are so far off the mark because of the Hate in you." I hear that ..
Not a hate crime, not racially motivated though some here are really wanting it to be, but it usually doesn't work that way because hate crimes are predominantly committed by white guys which may be why some are trying so hard to make this one racially motivated. Very hard to believe this was a racially motivated because these lowlifes pulled off robberies before and after this tragic event. These guys are obviously dumber than a box of hammers, got their selves into a situation where murder seemed their only way out for Cowards..

"The Pietrzaks were a mixed-race couple and all four men accused are black, causing SOME to allege the crime was racially motivated. But homicide investigators dismissed that notion, saying that even though a racial slur was found spray-painted inside the Pietrzaks' home after the murders, it was done to throw off the investigation."

The only personal twist this had was because Sgt Pietrzak told one of them he had no chance for promotion.

It is painfully obvious that both the military and the police have drastically lowered their standards for recruitment these past 10 years.

I would still like to know if any of these guys were ever in Iraq or Afghanistan ..
Comment Profile ImageLMAO
Comment #39 | Thursday, Jun 13, 2013 at 8:24 am
@Mike W: Well of course, only white people, predominately males, are capable of hate. Gosh, what a revelation, why didn't we think of that, certainly nothing discriminatory about that remark Mike. I'm curious though, just how far up your patooty is your head? Do you really think that anyone, other than you and perhaps a handful of other liberal white haters would buy and then try to sell such a load of baloney? There are bad people everywhere, all races, creeds and colors. It is WRONG to discriminate and it is WRONG to hate, and it is certainly WRONG to kill. These guys were mean to begin with, and that they killed a fellow white Marine because he refused to promote one of them and on top of that he had the audacity to marry a woman of color. The police and the DA didn't have the huavos to charge them with a hate crime because they are African American. If 3 white men had killed a black officer because they wanted to rob him and because he refused to promote them, they would have been charged with a hate crime and you know it. Especially if he happened to have a white wife. By the way my African American daughter-in-law agrees with me 100% on this. I hope, as she does, that this type of evil, racial hatred, on all sides, is on the way out of our society. I pray that is true for my grand children's sake.
Comment Profile Imageinvestigator
Comment #40 | Wednesday, Jul 17, 2013 at 9:14 am
Alex: Are you out of your mind, or do you even have one? Go to someone's house armed with shotguns and pistols at 1:00 a.m. to "talk"? And then what does the victim do when they leave after that? Kiss his wife good-night and say, "Gee, my buddies are funny guys, huh?"

I cannot stand the brainless "Awwww, He was so sweeeet... (when I knew him as a child)" comments from flighty, giggling college girls, (and now Alex), when they are referring to a criminal or some murderous p.o.s.! I'm sure just about every thug was just the cutest baby! They all read comic books (or at least looked at the pictures) and played video games! Is that how we gauge behavior?

These five Marines, (yes, five. Justin Weissinger was in jail that weekend and would have been the fifth one there that night), were all breaking into homes and committing crimes for many months in the area of Camp Pendleton.

Report:

"John's site on MySpace offered a window into the sick mind of the 18-year-old private from Baltimore.

"Chillin waitin 4 da killin," was the caption under a photo he posted before the newlyweds were executed on Oct. 15.

Elsewhere on the site, John - an admitted collector of knives and swords - wrote that "shooting s---" and "blowin s--- up" was a great "stress reliever."

Alex, tell us some more about how "nice" and "honest" he was.

And for others info, no, none of these non-Marines were ever deployed. I take that back. Yes. One had been deployed to operation Iraqi freedom.. Sgt. Jan Pietrzak!
Comment Profile ImageDon Krahn
Comment #41 | Tuesday, Aug 27, 2013 at 9:36 pm
This whole thing goes beyond imagination. Four Marines torture and execute their immediate superior? Four Marines rape and execute their superior's wife? The Marines turn this blatant case of insubordination to the Civil Court? While it's obvious that their entire unit has a complete lack of discipline? Who cares what the motive was when it's obvious their entire military division must be completely lacking in any semblance of military discipline? To begin with, their unit if not the entire Marine Corps should require the strictest restructuring of the chain of command that something this unimaginable could occur.

Further, if these sick psychos are ever released, they should face serious court martial.

Article Comments are contributed by our readers, and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Fallbrook Village News staff. The name listed as the author for comments cannot be verified; Comment authors are not guaranteed to be who they claim they are.

 

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