Peter Moses (WDTV Durham)

An alleged cult leader of the Black Hebrew Israelites religious sect, members of which believe that they are direct descendants of the ancient tribes of Israel, pleaded guilty Monday to two charges of first-degree murder in the 2011 deaths of 4-year-old Jadon Higganbothan and his 28-year-old mother, Antoinetta McKoy.

At a court hearing last year, prosecutors said that Peter Moses, 28, killed Higganbotham because he believed that he was gay. Today Moses avoided the death penalty by agreeing to testify against others charged in the case. From WDTV Durham:

Their bodies were found buried in plastic bags by a plumber working in the backyard of a home in the 2600 block of Ashe Street last summer.

McKoy and Higganbothan lived with a polygamist religious group led by Moses known as the "Black Hebrew Israelites."

At a court hearing last year, Durham District Attorney Tracey Cline said Moses believed the boy was homosexual and that was unacceptable to his religious beliefs. She said Moses shot Higganbothan in the garage of a home on Pear Tree Lane in front of his mother.

Cline said investigators believe McKoy was killed because she tried to escape from the group and it feared she would tell police about the murder.


Read more at WDTV Durham.