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Life-long friends died together in quadruple shooting

Authorities do not believe drugs or gangs were a factor in the deaths of four people on a Research Triangle Park road late Friday.

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RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C. — A clearer picture emerged Monday of the four people killed Friday night along a road in Research Triangle Park.

Authorities do not believe drugs or gangs were a factor in the deaths of Brinton Marcell Millsap, 23, of 8 Mellon Court, Alexandria J. (AJ) Baker Pierce, 23, of 2327 Oriole Drive, Amesha Alia Page-Smith, 24, of 822 Roane St., and Adrianne Celeste Stevens, 22, of 2022 Buffalo Way.

Deputies found the three women inside a car owned by Page-Smith's mother, near the intersection of Park Office Drive and N.C. Highway 54 in Research Triangle Park, just before midnight on Friday. Millsap, whom authorities say was the shooter, was found outside the car.

A caller to 911 just before midnight on Friday reported seeing a man fire three or four gunshots. Ten minutes later, another caller said he heard "banging" and saw someone lying on the ground.

Stevens' mother said the four had been friends since elementary school. Pierce and Millsap were dating.

All four attended Durham's Southern High School at one time. Page-Smith graduated in 2005 and Stevens followed in 2006. Pierce graduated from Hillside the same year. Millsap withdrew from Durham's Northern High in 2006. 

Pierce was a senior at the University of North Carolina-Greensboro studying English. Page-Smith was one course shy of a degree in psychology at North Carolina A&T University, but had not been enrolled there since spring 2010, school officials said.

Other family members declined an interview and authorities had little to add beyond describing the deaths as murder-suicide.

Millsap's Facebook page might have held a warning of things to come. On May 20, he wrote something on his page that he had a strap, a word sometimes used as slang for gun. In the entry, he wrote that he knew he could cheat death and that God sent him a strap and said to use it when he needs help. 

Millsap's Facebook page has since been deleted. 

Anyone who may have been in the area and seen anything unusual from 11 p.m. Friday to midnight is asked to call the Durham County Sheriff's Office criminal investigations division at 919-560-0880.


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