Cheers erupted in a Texas courtroom after suspected serial killer Billy Chemirmir was found guilty of capital murder in the death of one of his alleged victims.
Authorities say that Chemirmir, 49 years old, was accused of sneaking into living spaces often pretending to be a maintenance worker, before entering the rooms of at most 18 elderly women. He allegedly covered them with pillows and then stole their jewelry.
The jury heard testimony of the only woman who survived Chemirmir.
“He just smashed a pillow down hard over my face and my chest and I just couldn’t breathe,”She testified.
The jury took only 40 minutes for Chemirmir to be found guilty of the murder of Lu Harris, an 81-year old woman. Her lipstick-stained pillow that was used to kill Lu Harris was also shown to them.
According to prosecutors, Chemirmir first saw Harris in a Walmart and then followed Harris home.
He then stole her jewelry box and later discovered it in a dumpster. Officials claimed that all the jewelry in it was stolen.
The jury came back with a guilty verdict after four days of testimony in what was Chemirmir’s retrial. He was first tried for Harris’ murder in November, but a deadlocked jury resulted in a mistrial.
After the verdict was read out, Harris’ relatives and those of other women who were suspected to have been murdered by Chemirmir came together.
“Just losing your mom naturally, to go through that grieving process, then to find out that they’re murdered, and then you start thinking about her last moment on this world, and the last thing that she looked at, and um, that’s really tough,” one of alleged victims’ daughters told Inside Edition.
The verdict carries with it a life sentence with no possibility of parole, but a second capital murder trial will be held in the hope to obtain a second conviction if for some reason Chemirmir’s conviction is reversed on appeal, he will not be freed from prison, officials said.