DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – The four suspects accused in the vicious beating and stabbing murders of six people were denied bond and appointed public defenders Monday during their first court appearance.
Some relatives of the victims sat in the hearing as the defendants appeared before Volusia County Judge Mary Jane Henderson.
Troy Victorino (search), 27, who investigators described as the ringleader, kept his head down during the hearing.
"I wanted to see this. I wanted to see who murdered my daughter," said Kay Shukwit, mother of 19-year-old Michelle Nathan. "I want to look at him."
The teens confessed shortly after they were arrested Saturday, authorities said.
Police said the attack was the brutal culmination of an argument between Victorino, an ex-convict, and one of the victims, who is believed to be Erin Belanger, 22. Investigators said Victorino organized the attack over his video game system, which had been removed from a vacant house belonging to Belanger's grandparents, where he and others had been squatting.
Also killed were Anthony Vega, 34; Roberto "Tito" Gonzalez, 28; Belanger's boyfriend, Francisco Ayo Roman, 30; and Jonathan Gleason, 18.
All four suspects were armed with aluminum bats when Victorino kicked in the locked front door, according to arrest records. The group, who wore black clothes and had scarves on their faces, grabbed knives inside and attacked victims in different rooms of the three-bedroom house, authorities said.
The victims, some of whom were sleeping, did not put up a fight or try to escape, Sheriff Ben Johnson said. All had been stabbed, but autopsies determined the cause of death was the beating injuries. Victorino, the last to leave the house, took the Xbox (search), police said.
"This is the worst thing that I've ever seen in my career," said Johnson, a 33-year veteran of law enforcement. "The brutal force used against the victims ... It's indescribable."