Arrests made in fatal shooting of Jersey City couple

Darmelia Lawrence, Latonia Bellamy, and Shiquan Bellamy were arrested and charged in the murder of an engaged couple in Jersey City.

April 13, 2010 4:51:19 AM PDT
Jersey City police say three people are in custody in the fatal shooting of an engaged couple killed in an apparent botched carjacking.Saying Goodbye to Michael Muchioki, long lines of loved ones poured outside Monumental Baptist Church in Jersey City on Friday. Services lasted all afternoon.

"I just don't see how any human being can just maliciously take people's life over some gift cards, a wedding ring and a I-phone. Take my little cousin's life," Michael Sterling said.

Muchioki and his fiance Nia Haqq, 25, had just come back from their own engagement party when they were shot and killed, during the attempted carjacking.

The incident happened at 243 Randolf Avenue in Jersey City on Easter Sunday.

The thieves got away with Haqq's engagement ring, an iPhone and some giftcards. But they were not able to steal the car because of an anti-theft device.

Investigators say this was a random crime of opportunity.

Darmeila Lawrence and Latonia Bellamy and her cousin Shiquan Bellamy, all 19, are charged with their murders.

Prosecutors say they used illegal guns, a shotgun and handgun, to rob and kill the soon to be married couple.

The victims' families found out about the arrests as they were headed to the funeral.

"Just trying to get through the day. This is all happening so fast. This is very much overwhelming," one cousin said.

"We're going to go after them. Make sure they never step outside of a cell again. I don't know who they're parents are, but they should have done a better job," Majeeda Haqq, victim's mother, said.

Latonia Bellamy is a freshman Felican College in Lodi. She was home on Spring Break.

"I did not know. I did not know," her mother, Tiffany, said. "She had a life. She was going to college. She was trying to be somebody."

Tiffany Bellamy said her tears were also for the parents of Muchioki and Haqq.

"I'm so sorry. I would give my life for them if I could. I would lay down for the both of them people if I could," she said.

Muchioki and Haqq were laid to rest together, wearing their wedding bands.


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