According to CBS affiliate WGCL, the two arrests were made after evidence found at the crime scene was processed by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation. This evidence directly linked Tasmiyah and Jasmiyah to the murder of their mother Jarmecca Whitehead, the Atlanta station reports.
The girls, who were 15 at the time of the murder, told police that they came home and found their mother dead, according to WGCL. The teens flagged down sheriff’s deputies for help after they said they made the discovery.
Police said the mother was found stabbed in the back.
Friends and family members of the teen twins have come forward to say they’re not surprised at all by the allegations that the girls brutally murdered their mother.
The girls, known as “Tas” and “Jas,” were once honor students and Girl Scouts but had become extremely difficult for their mother to handle.
“The girls wanted to do what they wanted to do,” said Yucca Harris, Whitehead’s best friend.
Tas and Jas had been living with their elderly great-grandmother for about a year and a half following an incident in which they physically assaulted Whitehead. Police had been called to intervene in that case.
Friends say the 80 year old great-grandmother, also had problems with the teens.
“She’s an 80-year-old woman,” Harris said of Whitehead’s grandmother. “[Tas and Jas] could get away with just about anything.”
Michelle Temple, friend and former boss of the murdered mother, recounts that the girls had stolen $200 from her and they’d also stolen money from their great-grandmother in the past.
“The [great-grandmother] eventually had to get a dead-bolt for her bedroom,” Temple said.
The girls had just moved back home eight days prior to their mother’s death. Tasmiyah and Jasmiyah, were arrested and charged with murder in their mother’s death after Whitehead was found in a pool of blood, beaten and stabbed repeatedly.
The friends all say that Whitehead was committed to her daughters and felt they deserved a fresh start.
“The last night I saw her, she told me she was going to fight for those girls,” said Harris, who was invited to a welcome home dinner Whitehead had for Tas and Jas five days before her death.
“They agreed to start over, to forgive and forget.” Harris said she had a long conversation with her friend’s daughters that night, encouraging them to call her whenever they needed to talk.
“I thought I got through to them,” Harris said.
Both girls have denied killing their mother but evidence processed in the GBI crime lab links the girls to the slaying.
The twins originally claimed they came home from school and discovered their mother’s battered body in a pool of blood. One of them flagged down a Rockdale County Sheriff’s deputy who was in the neighborhood serving a warrant on an unrelated matter.
There was no sign of forced entry, and police suspected early on that Whitehead knew her killer.
The girls have been separated “to keep them from comparing notes,” Humphries said. One is in the Rockdale Youth Detention Center while the other was sent to Gwinnett’s YDC. They’re being held without bond and will be tried as adults.
“They were just defiant,” says Petrina Sims (owner of Simply Unique, a salon where Whitehead worked until her death) said of the twins.
“They had grown so wild in just a couple of years, like they were two different people. They weren’t those sweet little girls anymore.”