A Texas Jury on April 28 found Billy Chemirmir guilty of capital murder in the death of Li The Harris, 81, one of his alleged dozens of victims.
Chemirmir,49, a Kenyan immigrant from Eldama Ravine, Baringo County, and former home health aide, allegedly targeted elderly women loving in senior homes by posing as a handyman, before suffocating them and stealing their valuables.
He is charged with killing 17 more elderly women, but police believe the number of his victims could be higher.
Prosecutors said on March 20, 2018, Chemirmir spotted Harris at a Walmart, followed her and then used her polka dotted pillow to smother her to death.
“That man, right there, is capable of taking the most innocent of objects, the things we put our children’s heads down at night so they can have dreams… and he turned them into instruments of nightmares,” Prosecutor Glen Fitzmartin told jurors Thursday, according to The Dallas Morning News.
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Media reports indicate police arrested Chemirmir for Harris’ death while investigating him for a separate attack on a 91-year-old senior living resident. The 91-year-old alleged victim said a man broke into a her apartment and put a pillow on her face in an attempt to suffocate her.
Police identified her attacker as Chermirmir and tracked him using his vehicle license plates information. They caught him after Harris’ death with jewelry and cash belonging to her, while he was trying to get rid of one of his alleged victim’s documents, according to the New York Post.
According to media reports, cellphone data linked Chemirmir to other deaths, some deemed from natural causes, only to be changed later after evidence emerged linking the elderly women to Chemirmir.
The jury returned a guilty verdict after deliberating for less than an hour, the verdict came after the judge declared a mistrial in November last year after on juror refused to convict him. For a conviction, a jury of 12 people must arrive at a unanimous decision.
Despite the guilty verdict, Chemirmir has maintained his innocence.
“I’m not a killer, Chemirmir told the Dallas Morning News. “I’m not at all what they’re saying I am. I am and innocent person.”
Victim families celebrated the guilty verdict as reported by Dallas Morning News