Na Cola Darcel Franklin (pictured) was only eight hours away from marrying the man with whom she had planned to spend the rest of her life. But, around 2 a.m. on Saturday morning, she killed him.
Franklin and the late groom-to-be, Billy Rafael Brewster, reportedly got into an argument that turned fatal in their apartment in Whitehall Township, PA., where they had been living for a year, according to The Express-Times.
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Brewster’s cousin Nakia Kali and his wife, Monique Kali, traveled from Illinois and were staying with the couple at the time of the fatal attack. Four children were also present in the home. It is not exactly clear what exactly sparked the fatal confrontation between Franklin and Brewster. And different media reports give inconclusive accounts of when the knife was drawn or from where it came.
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The Express Times reports that Monique Kali heard someone yell “knife” during the argument. She and her husband were in their bedroom at the time. When Monique left the room to see what was going on, she noticed blood on the side of Brewster’s shirt. She reportedly stood between Brewster and Franklin while her husband shouted for the groom to leave the apartment. Monique then tackled Franklin, dislodging the knife. One of the children in the apartment reportedly took the knife to the kitchen.
When police arrived at the scene, they found Brewster on the second-floor landing of the apartment complex. He was taken to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead at 3:24 a.m. The cause of death was a stab wound, according to the Lehigh County coroner’s office. Brewster reportedly suffered two stab wounds to his left torso that resulted in a punctured heart.
Franklin was arrested and charged with criminal homicide in Brewster’s death. She is being held without bond.
The Morning Call newspaper reports that Franklin seemed to be unaware of her actions:
You got to check again!” Na Cola Darcel Franklin pleaded to the judge during her arraignment Saturday afternoon.
The 31-year-old Whitehall Township woman apparently was unable to comprehend that her fiance, Billy Rafeal Brewster, 36, was dead — and that she was being charged with murdering him on their wedding day.
District Judge Donna Butler responded matter-of-factly.
“He was pronounced dead by the Lehigh County coroner earlier today,” she said.
Franklin wailed and covered her face in her hands.
“I want my family back,” she gasped, rocking gently back and forth. “I want to go home.”
The judge told her that she would not be going home anytime soon. When the she asked Franklin if she understood the charge against her, she reportedly stood mute. When the judge repeated her question, Franklin sobbed through her response.
“I … did … not … kill … him … on … purpose,” she said.
Franklin and her late groom were scheduled to marry at 10 a.m. that morning.