Last summer, a family member of Camille Harrell, who was murdered in June, told us that the "gentle giant" was killed after defending her twin sister, Carmen, at East Colfax's Sand & Sage Motel.
Now, in the wake of Brandon Foote's conviction for the crime (Merita Curry, who's also charged in the case, is still awaiting trial), a previously sealed arrest affidavit has been released — and it confirms this account.
According to the document, on view below in its entirety, Camille fired a warning shot to stop an assault on Carmen by Foote and Curry. Shortly thereafter, the report goes on, Foote gunned her down.
Camille and Carmen were close throughout their lives, as documented in photos from our original post, including this childhood image....
...and a pic from when the girls were all grown up:
Savina Billups, the twins' cousin, who traveled from Florida to Colorado to attend a birthday party for her mom only to see her visit turn tragic, acknowledged that Camille "had a demeanor — she looked very tough. But she was really a very sweet person. And her main thing was, 'I am my sister's keeper.'
"She felt that way about her whole family. She had four sisters and a brother, and she would always protect them.
"She was not a person who would initiate anything," Billups continued. "It would be, 'If you mess with my family, I'm going to defend my family.'
"But she was very kind. She would give someone the shirt off her back. She may have seemed scary, but once you got to know her, she was absolutely beautiful inside and out."
These qualities were extinguished on June 25 of last year.
At 9:10 p.m. on that date, the affidavit notes, Denver police officers responded to the Sage & Sand, located at 8415 East Colfax — a block south of where Camille's body was found.
There, they interviewed Carmen, who said she and Camille had been staying in separate rooms at the motel.
Earlier that evening, Carmen told investigators that she was in her room when she heard loud pounding on the door.
Outside it were Foote, nicknamed "G," and Curry, known as "Re-Re," whom Carmen had known for several years — but that didn't mean they were welcome.
Carmen quickly shut and locked the door, but she said Foote and Curry forced it open and began assaulting her.
Around that time, Carmen was informed about the attack and came to the room armed with a handgun.
She fired shots into the ceiling of the room and demanded that Foote and Curry stop what they were doing, Carmen maintained.
At that point, Camille left the room and Foote followed her, the affidavit goes on.
Moments later, Carmen heard the sound of gunshots and called Camille on her cell phone to find out what happened.
"He shot me," Camille replied.
More shots followed, after which the conversation stopped.
With that, Carmen went in search of her sister and found her on the ground near the intersection of 16th and Wabash Street.
She stayed with her until police and paramedics arrived and pronounced her dead.
Police subsequently interviewed a neighbor who said she'd witnessed the shooting.
The neighbor saw Camille limping and a man, Foote, pursuing her while holding a gun in his right hand.
The pair began arguing, the neighbor said — and at some point during the conversation, Camille said, "Get me. Get me, then."
Foote did. The neighbor said he raised his handgun and fired a shot into her upper body.
She immediately fell to the ground, after which Foote shot her several more times, the neighbor added.
This evidence proved to be plenty for the jury that heard Foote's case.
Last week, he was found guilty of first-degree murder after deliberation, first-degree felony murder and first-degree burglary.
He's scheduled to be sentenced on June 3.
That same month, Curry, who's identified by the Denver District Attorney's Office as Merita Curry-Swanson, will have her own case heard. She's charged with first-degree felony murder and first-degree burglary.
Continue to see mug shots for Foote and Curry, followed by the affidavit.
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