Suspect accused of killing woman, wounding her daughter pleads not guilty

A 28-year-old man charged in connection with slaying a woman and wounding her 12-year-old daughter during an August drug-related robbery pleaded not guilty Thursday in District Court.

Willie Darnell Mason was indicted by a grand jury last week on eight felony counts, including murder with a deadly weapon, robbery with a deadly weapon and conspiracy to commit murder.

The Clark County district attorney's death penalty committee will review the case, prosecutors said.

Authorities allege Stephanie Cousins, 49, arranged a drug deal with 28-year-old Derecia Newman and her boyfriend, Cornelius Mayo, on Aug. 7 at Newman's apartment in the 5600 block of Meikle Lane, near Christy Lane and Lake Mead Boulevard.

Cousins went to Newman's apartment with three others, including Mason, and David James Burns, 19, according to Cousins' arrest report.

Newman answered the door and Cousins handed her $20. Burns and Mason then entered the apartment, and Burns shot Newman and her daughter, De'Vonia, as Mason searched the house for money and drugs, according to the report.

Police said the woman accused of being the getaway driver, Monica Martinez, 38, was arrested soon after the shooting.

Burns and Mason were arrested in September in San Bernardino, Calif., by Las Vegas police detectives with the assistance of the FBI and the Inland Regional Apprehension Team.

Cousins was arrested last week.


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