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After threats, Fayetteville man charged with killing daughters wears bulletproof vest in court

Posted March 27

— Wearing a bulletproof vest, a Fayetteville man charged with the murder of his toddler and infant daughters made his first court appearance on Monday morning in Hoke County.

Tillman Freeman III stabbed his 2-year-old daughter Serenity Freeman and 4-day-old daughter Genesis Freeman on Friday, according to authorities. Their bodies were found at about 2 a.m. Saturday inside a car off the side of the road near the intersection of N.C. Highway 211 and Army Road.

Sheriff Hubert Peterkin said the killings were motivated by Freeman thinking his wife was cheating on him and that the children were not his. Both children were stabbed multiple times with a hunter's knife, Peterkin said.

Freeman's hearing on Monday took only about 7 minutes.

"I'd probably tell him that I hope somebody beats him every day he's locked up," said James McGeachy, Freeman's brother-in-law. "This is ridiculous. I mean, you hurt two kids that's innocent. I mean, even if the mom, you is mad at the mom, the kids didn't have nothing to do with it. They didn't have nothing to do with that."

Peterkin said there have been several threats made against Freeman on social media, and that he is taking the appropriate actions to keep him safe while he awaits trial.

"As law enforcement we have an obligation to protect everyone," Peterkin said. "There have been a lot of indirect threats on his life where people made comments on the street, in the community and on social media."

Tillman was given a court-appointed attorney and is being held without bond.

His next court appearance is April 5.

Freeman also has a 5-year-old son. He has been convicted of several felonies dating back to 2004, including robbery, assault, breaking and entering, larceny and credit card theft.


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  • Stephanie Tripp Mar 28, 12:02 p.m.
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    As much as we all may hate what this man has "allegedly" done he still has rights. Granted, the children didn't have to and shouldn't have been killed. I am disgusted by this as anyone, but he still has rights. We have a constitution that gives ALL people charged with a crime, regardless of how heinous it may be, the right to a fair and speedy trial and the right to a trial by a jury of their peers. My hope and prayer is that this mother, her surviving son and family can also get the help that they will need to face the days ahead.

  • Eric Rothman Mar 28, 9:43 a.m.
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    So glad we are trying to protect him!!!! NOT

  • Dug Danger Mar 28, 7:42 a.m.
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    It is absolutely ridiculous that this world has come to this type of behavior. To "have" to provide protection for this .......well, it's just ridiculous.

  • Shirl Graham Mar 27, 10:25 p.m.
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    Totally needs to die. Anyone who can kill a child should.The problem here is this killer still has rights. Big Problem especially if he is guilty.

  • Charles Williams Mar 27, 8:40 p.m.
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    View quoted thread

    . I would die first rather than take any of his organs.

  • Rick Fetter Mar 27, 8:31 p.m.
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    Accidents and suicides seem to be common in the local jails lately, just saying.

  • Jj Parker Mar 27, 6:58 p.m.
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    Put a bullet right between his eyes!

  • Jj Parker Mar 27, 6:18 p.m.
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    W...T...W??? Giving him a bullet proof vest at the tax payers dime??? ARE YOU KIDDING ME????

    Why does he get one?? I would like to have WRAL totally follow up on this POS and the reasoning behind why he get's a vest and 1st responders don't!!!!


  • Kevin Powell Mar 27, 5:23 p.m.
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    You just aired a story about how authorities are working on ways to protect this monster while he awaits trial. Why??? He didn't protect his children! Why does NC waist time and taxpayer money on these people that they already know are guilty? Strap him down in a car and do to him what he did to those innocent children!

  • Janet Ghumri Mar 27, 4:25 p.m.
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    He looks so smug in the photo, no remorse at all. What kind of animal does that to his innocent babies?? I'm sure he wasn't a candidate for father of the year before this, and heaven only knows how he treated the children when he was alone with them.
    And now we're supposed to be concerned about his safety getting into and out of court?? It's disgusting.