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Government Suspect in sisters' deaths charged in New Year's Eve killing

Suspect in sisters’ deaths charged in New Year’s Eve killing

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COMMERCE, Texas (AP) — A 21-year-old man arrested on a capital murder charge in the fatal shooting this week of two sisters at a university dormitory in Texas has been charged in the fatal shooting of a man on New Year’s Eve, authorities said Wednesday.

Jacques Dshawn Smith was arrested Tuesday in the Dallas suburb of Rowlett. Police said he fatally shot 20-year-old Abbaney Matts, who authorities believe was his ex-girlfriend, and her sister, 19-year-old Deja Matts, on Monday. The shootings happened at Pride Rock residence hall on the campus of Texas A&M University-Commerce, about 65 miles (105 kilometers) northeast of Dallas. Abbaney Matts’ 2-year-old son was wounded but has been released from the hospital.

On Wednesday, police in Denton — which is about 75 miles (120 kilometers) to the west of the university campus in Commerce — said Smith was one of three men charged with capital murder in the Dec. 31 shooting of Steven Daniels.

Denton police said their detectives were helping the Texas Department of Public Safety execute a search warrant in Rowlett on Tuesday when evidence was located that connected Smith and two others to the New Year’s Eve killing. Denton detectives then applied for a secondary search warrant.

Police in Garland, a suburb of Dallas, said Smith was arrested on an aggravated assault charge a week before the sisters were killed after attacking Abbaney Matts and threatening her with a knife.

Smith is being held in Hunt County Jail on capital murder charges out of Hunt and Denton counties. His bond is set at $2 million. Jail records did not list an attorney for him.

Denton police found Daniels lying on the ground inside a gated apartment complex parking lot with a gunshot wound to the chest at about 11:30 p.m. on Dec. 31. The medical examiner’s records say he died about 40 minutes later.

The shooting Monday at Texas A&M University-Commerce led to the cancellation of classes until Thursday.

School officials said Deja Matts was a freshman at the university. Abbaney Matts and Smith were not enrolled at the school.

In October, two people were killed and a dozen others injured in an off-campus shooting at a homecoming and Halloween party involving Texas A&M-Commerce students.

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