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Darron Wint Had Help in Murder of Savopoulos Family: Cops

Prosecutors believe the brutal murder of the Savopoulos family and their housekeeper “required the presence and assistance of more than one person.”
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Police investigating the murder of a wealthy Washington, D.C., family and their housekeeper suspect that the alleged killer, Darron Wint, had help from accomplices, according to court documents released Friday.

In an affidavit seeking an arrest warrant for Wint, a city detective said he believed that others helped Wint hold the three adults and a child captive before killing them and torching the family's home.

Wint, 34, was captured Thursday in Maryland, a week after Savvas Savopoulos, 46, his wife, Amy, 47, their 10-year-old son, Philip, and their housekeeper, Veralicia "Vera" Figueroa, 57, were found by firefighters in the mansion's second floor. Wint was arraigned Friday on charges of first-degree murder.

Two other men and three women also were taken into custody at the time of Wint's arrest. They were questioned and released; no one other than Wint has been charged.

Savvas Savopoulos, 46, and his wife, Amy Savopoulos, 47.
Savvas Savopoulos, 46, and his wife, Amy Savopoulos, 47.Facebook via NBC Washington

The affidavit outlines more details of the crime, which investigators say began with a home invasion on the evening of May 13 and ended the next day, after Savvas Savopolous, the CEO of American Iron Works, arranged to have an assistant drop off $40,000 in cash to his home in Washington's upscale Woodley Park neighborhood.

Wint is a former American Iron Works employee, authorities have said.

Police Detective Jeffrey Owens, who prepared the affidavit, wrote that he believed the victims "were held captive by Mr. Wint and others" until the money was delivered. Owens went on to say that the crimes outlined in the affidavit "required the presence and assistance of more than one person."

Image: Murder suspect Wint is pictured in police booking photograph
Daron Dellon Dennis Wint in a 2007 police booking photograph.Oswego County Sheriff / via Reuters

The affidavit included several new details about the crime, including a testy exchange between investigators and the assistant who delivered the money the morning of the murders.

The assistant, who was not identified, first told cops that Savvas Savopolous had sent him a text asking for the delivery the same day. But after being questioned about a text message from Savopolous the night before, the assistant said he'd made a mistake, and that the request had been made that night.

The assistant also admitted he'd lied about how the money was packaged, according to the affidavit. In the first version provided to police, the assistant said he'd collected the cash in a manila envelope from the bank with help from a co-worker. Later, the assistant admitted that he'd actually first put the money in a red bag, then transferred it to an envelope in his car before dropping the package in a car parked in Savopolous' garage.

It is not clear whether the assistant is considered a potential suspect.

The burned Savopoulos home in Washington, D.C.SAUL LOEB / AFP - Getty Images

Authorities also detailed in the affidavit how they identified Wint by taking DNA from crusts of a pizza delivered to the house the night before the murders. The delivery person told police of dropping two pizzas on the front porch and ringing the doorbell, as Amy Savopolous had instructed when she called. The house was dark, with only the porch light on, the delivery person told police.

Wint allegedly fled the crime scene in Amy Savopolous' blue Porsche, which was found torched in Maryland later that day. Video surveillance captured a man, believed to be Wint, carrying a bucket. Inside the charred remains of the car, investigators found a neon green construction vest similar to others found in the Savopolous' garage, the affidavit says.

He was captured Thursday night in Maryland following a manhunt that led authorities to Brooklyn, New York, and back.

Wint appeared for his Friday afternoon arraignment in shackles and a white jumpsuit. He was ordered held without bail.

Acting U.S. Attorney Vincent Cohen Jr. said afterward that his office "will continue to investigate this case and bring all charges that are appropriate in the coming weeks." He did not elaborate.

"The residents of the District of Columbia grieve with the Savopoulos and Figueroa families," Cohen said. "And we at the U.S. Attorney's Office will use the full force of law to make sure justice is served in this matter."

NBC News' Peter Alexander, Adam Reis and Rachel Witkin contributed to this report.