Thursday, April 11, 2019

NYDN: Accused Queens nurse killer Danueal Drayton says in chilling affidavit that he took pictures of California victim

Accused killer Danueal Drayton has been declared incompetent again in California as new paperwork claims he took sick souvenir photos of his Los Angeles victim during her two-day hostage ordeal, the Daily News has learned.

The Brooklyn man who allegedly murdered nurse Samantha Stewart in her Springfield Gardens, Queens home last July then used her credit card to flee to Los Angeles, where he attacked another woman was declared incompetent on April 5, his defense lawyer told a judge Wednesday.

“Defendant must regain competency,” Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Susan Speer said as she formally paused his criminal case pending further psychiatric treatment and evaluation.

The new suspension came as The News uncovered a search warrant affidavit revealing chilling new details of the California police investigation.

The new paperwork confirms Drayton, 28, quickly confessed to killing Stewart after he was tracked to his next victim’s North Hollywood apartment by a fugitive task force including NYPD detectives on July 24.

It also says Drayton admitted roughing up the woman — who was found still alive inside the apartment — and recorded images of her during the attack.

“Drayton made statements of taking photos of (the Los Angeles victim) during the incident,” the affidavit written by LAPD John Perez said.

“Drayton admitted choking our victim with his arms and hands in attempts to kill her. Drayton stated he took a picture of our victim during the incident and that she was pretending to be dead,” Perez wrote in another section of the filing.

Drayton is charged with attempted murder of the Los Angeles woman, as well as rape, false imprisonment by violence and sexual penetration by a foreign object.

A judge allowed investigators to search Drayton’s phone and recover images, videos, location data, web history and text and chat data from the period of June 1 to July 25.

Authorities say he met and exchanged numbers with the unidentified woman, who was 28 at the time, shortly after arriving in Los Angeles.

“In my experience, if the suspect used his phone to take a picture during a crime then he may have photos from other crimes,” Perez said in his affidavit asking for the search.

The detective said he was interested in finding other possible victims too.

“Drayton stated he met many people during his stay in California,” Perez wrote.

At his arraignment on July 30, Drayton moaned loudly while strapped to a chair as a public defender entered a not guilty plea on his behalf.

The case was placed on hold in August for a prior competency hearing that led to an initial finding of incompetence. It was reinstated in early November.

In addition to Stewart’s murder, Drayton also allegedly choked an ex-girlfriend in Nassau County and raped an unidentified Brooklyn woman, sources previously told The News.

Stewart, 29, was found strangled and battered inside her Queens home on July 17.

During a jailhouse interview with The News on July 31, Drayton recalled killing Stewart after meeting her through a dating app.

He claimed he didn't want to strangle her but was compelled by “voices” in his head.

“I really liked her. I didn’t want to kill her,” he told The News while seated behind a glass partition at the Twin Towers men’s jail in Los Angeles.

“I’m a passenger in my own body,” he said multiple times, claiming the voices hijacked his self-control.

“It’s mind control,” he said. “They use direct energy weapons on me to control my mind.”

Drayton claimed he suffers from schizophrenia and bipolar II disorder.

He said he used bleach to partially clean up the crime scene at Stewart’s house but intentionally left his “Egyptian cologne” behind in the hopes police could link it to him.

“I wanted to get caught. I took some of her things with me and used them. I kept my same phone. I knew they could track it. I didn’t know how long it would take,” he said.

Drayton faces up to 23 years to life in state prison if convicted in Los Angeles as charged. (Via NYDN)