Double murder suspect, parents were not estranged

WASHINGTON (AP) – The Latest on the slaying of a North Carolina couple and the arrest of their son discovered with his missing 11-year-old niece in Washington, D.C. (all times local):

3:30 p.m.

A relative of a North Carolina man suspected of killing his parents and taking his 11-year-old niece to Washington, D.C., says Curtis Atkinson Jr. was not estranged from his parents.

Nina Chandler of Upper Marlboro, Maryland, is Atkinson’s first cousin. She says the family doesn’t know what happened or why he was found with his brother’s missing daughter, Arieyana, after fleeing the family home in North Carolina where Atkinson’s parents were found slain.

Atkinson’s parents had become Arieyana’s guardians when the girl’s father, 29-year-old Micah Atkinson, was killed in 2013. Micah Atkinson was Curtis Atkinson Jr.’s brother.

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11:15 a.m.

A North Carolina man suspected of killing his parents and found with his missing 11-year-old niece in Washington, D.C., is facing a court appearance following his weekend arrest after a chase and crash.

Curtis Atkinson Jr. is scheduled to appear in Superior Court on Monday afternoon, a day after his arrest. Police say Atkinson’s 11-year-old niece, who authorities believe was kidnapped Sunday after her grandparents were slain in North Carolina, was found in the car.

Atkinson was driving a car described in an Amber Alert. Authorities say they received a 911 call from a female in the car with Atkinson and then swarmed the area. Also arrested was another woman in the car, 25-year-old Nikkia Cooper, who was being held on drug charges.

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7:45 a.m.

Police say a 911 call led officers in Washington, D.C., to an 11-year-old girl who authorities believe was kidnapped after her grandparents were slain in North Carolina.

Maj. Mike Smathers of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department said at a news conference that a female in the car described in an Amber Alert called 911 Sunday saying she had been kidnapped. Based on the caller’s description of her location, Smathers says police flooded the area and spotted the car.

After a chase and crash near Washington’s monuments and memorials, Metropolitan Police Department Capt. David Sledge says the kidnapping suspect was arrested.

Police say the girl’s uncle, Curtis Atkinson Jr., is suspected of killing his parents at their Charlotte home.

Sledge says the girl was taken to a hospital but appears to be OK.

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