Man charged in Backpage.com murders will face trial on the charges

EASTPOINTE, Mich. (WXYZ) - The man accused of killing four women he met on a website called BackPage.com showed no emotion in his preliminary exam Tuesday.

Judge Maceroni decided the defendant, James Brown, would be bound over for court after hearing from expert witnesses.

Perhaps the most damaging evidence came from Lt. Derryck Thomas from the Detroit Police Department's Homicide Unit. He testified that when Brown was brought into the station he denied killing four women in December 2011.

Vernithia McCrary, Renisha Landers, Demisha Hunt, and Natasha Curtis were all found dead in car trunks. Lt. Thomas said then Brown admitted to him that he met Landers and Hunt on BackPage.com, an adult escort site.

Brown allegedly told investigators he invited them to his mother's house in Sterling Heights, where he lived in the basement. They allegedly partied with marijuana and alcohol. 

Brown said he had sex with one of the women, and then the three crashed for the night. When Brown woke up the next day, both women were dead, he said.

According to police, he put their bodies in their car and drove them to a Detroit neighborhood where he used to live and left their bodies there.

He then told police he invited Curtis and McCrary to his mother's  home. Allegedly, he also met them on BackPage.com.

Lt. Thomas said the three got high. 

Then, according to Brown, he found the women dead the next morning.

Investigators said Brown told them he took their car, with their bodies inside and left it in a neighborhood very close to the location where the bodies of Landers and Hunt were found.

Lt. Thomas said Brown confessed  to  going to a gas station, filling a cup with fuel, and using it to accelerate a fire he started on the car.

The judge also heard from an expert who testified about how investigators connected Brown to the victims through cell phone records.

Brown's attorney, Jeff Cojocar, believes there is conflicting information from what was testified in court and videos of the interrogation.  He says that will come out in court. 

Brown will be formally arraigned in Circuit Court on  Jan 22  at 1:30 p.m.

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