Hearing in church worker murder case allows prosecutors to seek death penalty

News14.com, Oct. 22, 2002

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Prosecutors will pursue the death penalty in the trial of a man accused of killing a Seattle church worker.

A Tuesday hearing found that there are aggravating factors that will allow prosecutors to seek the death penalty in that case.

Eugene DeMorris Evans was arrested by police they found the body of 18-year-old unification church.

Byrne’s parents came to Charlotte shortly after their daughter’s murder, and said they forgave Evans.
Investigators gave a brutal account of what they believe happened at Roseland Apartments the day the 18-year-old disappeared.

Police told the judge in Monday’s bond hearing that Eugene DeMorris Evans admitted he lured Byrne to a vacant apartment because he wanted to rob her.

Once there, Evans told police he decided he wanted to have sex with her too.

Evans allegedly told Byrne to look out the apartment window to keep an eye on his bike. At that point, police said he told them he walked up behind Byrne and choked her until she passed out.

Once Byrne was unconscious, police said Evans told them he sexually assaulted her.

Officers found her body the next day, roughly 24 hours after she first visited the apartment complex.

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