LANCASTER, Calif. (AP) — A Southern California father of four has been charged with decapitating his teenage son and 12-year-old daughter and abusing his two other boys, prosecutors said.
Maurice Jewel Taylor Sr., 34, faces two felony counts each of murder and child abuse under circumstances or conditions likely to cause great bodily injury or death, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced Tuesday.
Taylor is scheduled to be arraigned Dec. 21. It wasn’t known Wednesday if he has an attorney.
Taylor is charged with fatally stabbing the 13-year-old boy and 12-year-old girl on Nov. 29 in Lancaster, according to a news release. His other two boys, ages 8 and 9, were supposedly shown their siblings’ bodies and forced to stay in their bedrooms for several days without food, prosecutors said.
Taylor worked at a physical therapy center in Santa Monica but had been conducting training sessions online during the coronavirus pandemic. Some of his clients contacted authorities after he failed to show up for scheduled appointments, leading to the discovery of the victims, CBS Los Angeles reported.
Taylor was ordered held in lieu of $4.2 million bail. If convicted, he faces a possible maximum sentence of more than 57 years to life in state prison.