Judge Denies Homicide Defendant’s Request for Release

Thank you for reading D.C. Witness. Help us continue our mission into 2024.

Donate Now

On Feb. 29, DC Superior Court Judge Michael O’Keefe denied a homicide defendant’s request for release.

Brittany Gaylor, 32, is charged with second-degree murder while armed and assault with intent to kill while armed for her alleged involvement in the murder of her father, 70-year-old James Gaylor. The incident occurred on the 1600 block of 6th Street, NW, on Feb. 10. James succumbed to his injuries on Feb. 11.

After undergoing a psychological evaluation, Gaylor was declared mentally competent to stand trial.

The prosecution presented two body-worn camera videos from Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) officers detailing the incident.

The first, from Feb. 8, shows James Taylor talking to a police officer and claiming that his daughter had allegedly stood over his bed holding a knife, saying, “I’m going to kill you before you get the chance to kill me.”

The second clip, from Feb. 10, shows police officers administering aid to James after he was stabbed in the head, back, stomach, and arms. When officers asked James who did it, he allegedly replied “my daughter.”

“Everything he feared came to fruition,” said the prosecutor.

“Despite the horrific, graphic incident, there is no risk for anyone else,” said Todd Baldwin, Brittany’s defense attorney, who argued that she had never been violent toward anyone and she believed her life was in danger.

To support the claim, Baldwin presented a text message that Brittany sent to a friend on Feb. 6 saying if she was to mysteriously die, an autopsy should be done because her father was the one who killed her.

Judge O’Keefe noted although she was afraid, it does not prove Brittany was in any danger since she could have experienced hallucinations. He added that the texts sound like someone who “is experiencing a psychotic break.”

Judge O’Keefe denied the defense’s request for release, stating that “everybody is in danger if either words or an imaginary threat lead to this type of violence.”

Parties are slated to return Mar. 28.

Follow this case