The D.C. police officer charged with murder in the killing of his onetime girlfriend admitted to Prince George’s County homicide detectives that he met with her the night before the two of them were scheduled to be in court for a hearing to determine whether he had fathered her infant girl, according to police documents released Monday.
After initially denying that he had seen or talked to Wynetta Wright in more than a year, Richmond D. Phillips, 39, acknowledged that he met with her at a Hillcrest Heights park near his home the night of May 30, according to the charging documents. Images from a security camera appear to show Phillips and Wright sitting at a picnic table for about seven hours, into the next morning, the charging documents state.
That was the morning Phillips and Wright, 20, were due in court in Prince George’s for a hearing to begin to determine whether he was her baby’s father and, if so, how much child support he would be responsible for.
Phillips pulled out a gun and shot Wright in the head, according to police sources, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the investigation is continuing.
Phillips lives in Oxon Hill with his wife of 13 years and their 12-year-old daughter.
The charging documents were made public at a hearing in Prince George’s District Court on Monday, the same day that Judge John P. Morrissey ordered that Phillips continue to be held without bail pending a July 1 preliminary hearing.
Phillips is charged with first- and second-degree murder in Wright’s killing and with manslaughter in the death of her daughter, Jaylin Wright, who would have turned 1 last Friday, according to court documents.
The bodies of Wright and her baby were found Thursday night. Wright’s body was found in Oxon Run Spring Valley Park, about a quarter-mile from Phillips’s home, according to the charging documents.
Wright’s Saturn Vue was parked nearby, with the baby’s body strapped in a car seat in the back seat, according to the charging documents sworn out by Detective Benjamin Brown.
Wright had gone to the park with Jaylin to talk to Phillips, according to the charging documents. Phillips told detectives that he met with Wright for about seven hours, until about 6 a.m. May 31, according to the charging documents.
In a news conference after the hearing, State’s Attorney Angela D. Alsobrooks declined to say whether an autopsy by the state medical examiner’s office had determined a cause of death for Jaylin.
“This has been absolutely devastating for our community,” Alsobrooks said.
The prosecutor said Wright’s relatives are “beside themselves” and “want to express their hurt and pain” and see that justice is done.
Three relatives expressed themselves in court Monday. Phillips, who is being held in the Prince George’s jail in Upper Marlboro, was clad in an orange jumpsuit when he appeared for the hearing via closed-circuit television.
After the hearing, Morrissey dismissed Phillips but had him called back minutes later after Wyvette R. Wright, Wright’s mother, and another female relative asked the judge for permission to speak.
As Phillips stood silently, Wyvette Wright swore at him and said he was going to “feel my pain.”
Charletta Tucker, 34, an aunt of Wynetta Wright’s, told Phillips that relatives were supposed to be celebrating Jaylin’s birthday.
When Morrissey advised Tucker not to make any personal comments toward Phillips, she said she had nothing else to say to him.
“He’s trash,” Tucker said.
Phillips had worked as a vice officer in the 1st Police District. His police powers have been revoked, a spokesman for D.C. police said.