Authorities say a man from Burlington County pleaded guilty Tuesday to killing three people, including a 9-year-old child, during two separate incidents in 2019 and now faces a mere 60 years in prison.

Under a plea agreement, 26-year-old Terrance J. Matthews of Willingboro will be sentenced to 60 years behind bars for each homicide, however, the sentences will run concurrently and he will be eligible for parole after 51 years, or 85 percent of his sentence.

Burlington County Acting Prosecutor LaChia Bradshaw says the killing spree began during the early morning hours of February 18, 2019, when Matthews approached two men sitting in a car parked on Millbrook Drive and fired inside, fatally wounding 21-year-old Davell Williamson of Willingboro. The passenger was shot in the arm and treated at a local hospital.

On the evening of June 19th of that year, Williams killed his ex-girlfriend’s grandmother and brother inside of their Eastbrook Lane home. 68-year-old Jennifer Vassell and her grandson, 9-year-old Ishon Mathlin, Jr., were stabbed multiple times; Ishon was drowned in a bathtub.

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The following morning, Westampton Township police officers were called to a Wawa store for a woman in distress.

The investigation revealed that Matthews and his ex-girlfriend, Krissida Williams, had entered the store, and Williams told a Wawa employee that Matthews had killed her family. Matthews then fled the store, and Willingboro Township police officers discovered the bodies after being dispatched to the house to conduct a wellness check.

Police say those murders happened while Williams was at work. When she got home, Matthews was waiting for her and he held her against her will all night.

The motive for the killings stemmed from an argument Williams and Matthews had during a telephone call earlier in the day.

Matthews was apprehended on June 20th, 2019, by the Camden County police officers following a high-speed chase that ended when he crashed his car into a utility pole. Bradshaw says he used his Facebook account to broadcast the chase live on social media.

Sentencing is scheduled for July 22nd.

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Over the past few years, state lawmakers have taken on the challenge of dealing with accused child predators among the ranks of teachers and educators.

In 2018, the so-called “pass the trash” law went into effect, requiring stricter New Jersey school background checks related to child abuse and sexual misconduct.

The follow individuals were arrested over the past several years. Some have been convicted and sentenced to prison, while others have accepted plea deals for probation.

Others cases are still pending, including some court delays amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

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