- Associated Press - Friday, August 5, 2016

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - The prosecutor handling the case of an Indianapolis man accused of killing two teenagers said Friday the man’s double-murder trial will rely heavily on DNA evidence to place the victims at the defendant’s home.

Kevin Watkins was charged in December with two counts of murder in the killings of 15-year-old Timmee Jackson and 16-year-old Satori Williams. They vanished Dec. 24 and their bodies were later found at different locations.

Authorities allege Watkins suspected that Williams had burglarized his home on Dec. 18, in a break-in where about $5,000 in guns and other items were stolen.

Watkins appeared in court Friday for a pre-trial conference, but a Marion County judge moved that hearing to Aug. 26 after prosecutors sought the delay.

Deputy Prosecutor Mark Hollingsworth said prosecutors and Watkins’ attorney are awaiting a final DNA evidence report from the police crime lab. Prosecutors believe that report will show both victims were at Watkins’ home, where large amounts of blood were found.

“This case relies heavily on DNA evidence,” Hollingsworth said after Friday’s hearing. “We don’t have an eyewitness to the event so it’s going to be a very scientific case.”

Watkins, who’s being held without bond, has entered a not guilty plea in the case. His public defender, Jeff Neel, did not return a message seeking comment Friday.

Police were called to Watkins’ home Dec. 25 after William’s mother found blood there while searching for her son. She told officers she knew her son “was having some trouble” with the people who lived there, court documents state.

Officers found a gruesome mix of blood and apparent brain matter outside Watkins’ home and two bloody trails leading away from it. Jackson’s body was found in February in an Indianapolis pond. Williams’ body was discovered in April in a rural area near Indianapolis.

Hollingsworth said the evidence in the case will be “very disturbing” for their families when the trial is held, likely early next year.

Watkins was charged in January with criminal confinement and impersonating a police officer in a separate case where he allegedly posed as an officer and handcuffed a minor on Dec. 20 as he searched for those who burglarized his house.

Hollingsworth said he hopes to have evidence in that incident admitted in the double-murder trial to help establish Watkins’ alleged motive in the killings - that he was searching for whoever burglarized his home and suspected Jackson.

“We’re trying to show that that’s what he thought and that was the motive he had for taking two lives,” he said.

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