Judge on Thursday ordered Khari Sanford and Ali’Jah Larrue, both 18, to trial on first-degree murder charges in killings of Dr Beth Potter and Robin Carre in Madison, Wisconsin
Potter, 52, and Carre, 57, were found shot in the head execution-style in University of Wisconsin Arboretum on March 31
Police stated in complaint that Khari Sanford, who was dating couple’s daughter, Miriam ‘Mimi’ Potter Carre, shot the pair after abducting them from their home
Potter and her husband had moved their daughter and her boyfriend out of their house and into Airbnb for breaking social-distancing rules
Prosecutors were able to show there was sufficient probable cause to order Sanford and his alleged accomplice, Larrue, to trial
Sanford’s lawyer said no evidence was presented before the court that ties him to the murder weapon or the vehicle used to transport the victims
Larrue’s lawyer sought to distance him from the crime, arguing that his client was possibly hiding in the general vicinity of the crime scene
The two suspects are held on $1million bond, if they’re convicted as charged, face life in prison
Mimi Potter Carre has not been charged in connection to her parents’ deaths
A jogger found the bodies of husband and wife, Dr. Beth Potter, [left] and her husband Robin Carre, [right], were found dead in an arboretum in Madison on March 31. Their daughter’s live-in boyfriend and one of his friends have been charged with killing the couple
Police at the scene were the couple’s bodies were found at the University of Wisconsin’s arboretum, a research and popular recreational area
According to a criminal complaint, Potter told a friend just hours before her death that she and her husband had moved their daughter and her boyfriend out of their home and into an Airbnb apartment because the young couple were not following social distancing rules.
University of Wisconsin-Madison Police Detective Peter Grimyser testified during Thursday’s hearing that on the night of March 30, Sanford and his suspected accomplice, Larrue, who went by the nickname ‘Huncho,’ took Potter and Carre from their home, drove them in the white Volkswagen minivan the couple had lent to their daughter to the arboretum, where Sanford allegedly shot both victims in the head.
Mimi Potter Carre, [photo], the 18-year-old daughter of the slain couple, was dating and living with murder suspect Khari Sanford in her parents home before they were kicked out for their refusal to respect the protocol of social distancing in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic
According to the detective, Robin Carre had only a pair of boxer shorts on and his wife, Dr Potter, was wearing pajamas and socks, but no shoes.
By the time a jogger found them the next morning, Carre had died of his injuries. Potter was still clinging to life, but died from her injuries after being taken to a hospital.
Grimyser said Investigators used GPS data from Larrue’s phone and surveillance footage to track the movements of the white Volkswagen minivan on the night of the murders.
A classmate of Mimi and Sanford identified as DF said he had heard them talk about money before school was suspended in March.
‘DF reported hearing Miriam tell Khari Sanford that her parents had “bands” of money and that they were rich, the complaint said.
‘DF reported that “bands” likely meant thousands of dollars in cash.’
DF also told cops that Sanford had asked him to hide a gun after the shooting, but he had refused.
While there he made a phone call to his alleged accomplice Larrue, saying he had heard on social media that one of the victims was still alive, saying ‘I swear I hit them, how did they survive?’
He said Sanford said he had shot his girlfriend’s parents in the back of the head, although media reports at the time had not included that detail.
Police said text messages recovered from Potter Carre’s phone also put Larrue in the company of Sanford shortly after the shootings.
Sanford’s attorney, Andrew Martinez, said no evidence was presented before the court that ties his client to the white minivan or the gun used in the killings, and his dismissed the suspect’s alleged admission as not credible.
Larrue’s attorney, Michael Covey, argued that his client was not involved in the commission of the crime, and he got the detective to say on the record that there is nothing to suggest he was the shooter.
Covey further said that it is a ‘thin case’ with many unanswered questions.
Dane County Deputy District Attorney Matthew Moeser pushed back against Covey’s arguments, saying there is strong circumstantial evidence that Larrue played a role in the slayings.
‘Mr. Covey is suggesting essentially that [Larrue] was just an innocent bystander,’ Moeser said, adding that there is no evidence that the 18-year-old did anything to stop or prevents the murders, or that he was hiding out of fear.
Sanford and Larrue remain in the county jail on $1million bond each. If convicted as charged, they face life in prison.
Potter and Carre’s daughter has not been charged in connection to the killings.
According to the complaint, Sanford and Potter Carre had been living with her parents but not abiding by social distancing guidelines and other rules related to the coronavirus outbreak. Because Potter had a medical condition that put her at risk, the couple moved Sanford and Potter Carre into an Airbnb in the weeks before the killing.
Miriam ‘Mimi’ Potter Carre confirmed to cops that her parents had moved her out because she did not want to self-quarantine during the coronavirus crisis.
‘Miriam reported that her father had been self-quarantining himself for the past several weeks,’ the criminal complaint said.
She said Sanford had been living at the family’s home near the university for the past two weeks. She and Sanford were both seniors at Madison West High School, close to the family home. Sanford was a receiver on the school football team.
‘Miriam said that she loved her boyfriend, and she was extremely loyal to him,’ police said.
According to the police complaint sheet Potter Carre told police the day after the murders that Sanford had been with her the entire night before, but texts police recovered from her phone suggested Sanford was not with her that night.
Sanford and Larrue remain in the Dane County Jail on $1 million bond each.