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2 killed in Christmas Eve shooting, police ask for help

Nekeya Brown, who went by Tiffany, and Katon Hutt were found dead with gunshot wounds in a Boston Street apartment.

AURORA, Colo. — Aurora Police Department held a news conference Tuesday to ask the public for help in a double homicide on Christmas Eve.

Officers found Nekeya Brown and Katon Hutt, both 35, dead from gunshot wounds in an apartment in the 1500 block of Boston Street near East Colfax Avenue around 10:30 a.m. after an anonymous call for a welfare check. That's a few blocks east of the city line with Denver.

Investigators said two suspects arrived around 12:30 a.m. the night before in what they believe was a metallic dark blue sedan. They knocked on the door of the apartment, and police said they think one of the victims let them inside.

The suspects were inside for several minutes before multiple gunshots and screams were heard, followed by more gunshots, in audio from the time of the shooting, according to police.

The suspects were then seen running back to the sedan and leaving the scene. Police said about 10 minutes passed between the suspects exiting the car and the first gunshots.

Investigators have not been able to determine a motive for the shooting. They said there were people who congregated at the apartment, and it's possible the intended target of the shooting was not there.

Investigators also said they are not aware of any other crimes involving suspects or a vehicle with similar descriptions.

>Watch the full news conference below:

Brown's mother, Ethel Goodrich, asked the public for help identifying the suspects in her daughter's death.

"To her family, she was Nekeya," Goodrich said. "To many friends, she was Tiffany. A loving mother, daughter, sister, niece, aunt, cousin and friend. She did not deserve what happened to her this past Christmas Eve."

"She had a heart of gold," Goodrich added. "She had a smile that could open up the heavens and let blessings down on you. She loved openly."

Brown leaves behind three sons who are 16, 10 and 4 years old.

"We are asking you to help in identifying my baby's killers," Goodrich said. "The hardest that you can do is to tell her sons that we don't know why or who took their mother away from them."

Aurora Police Chief Art Acevedo read a statement from Hutt's mother.

"Katon was a giving and gracious person," the statement said. "He had the biggest heart and would give anyone anything they asked. These were his strengths, as well as his weaknesses." 

Hutt's mother said that he was almost completely blind and that sometimes he was taken advantage of by others.

"Tiffany was a friend to him," she said in the statement.

Brown often helped Hutt with issues and limitations caused by his near-blindness, police said.

Credit: Aurora Police Department
Nekeya "Tiffany" Brown [L] and Katon Hutt [R].

Investigators released the surveillance images below from the apartment complex of two suspects and the car they were driving, which is missing hubcaps on both front wheels and has a mark in the front-right area.

Credit: Aurora Police Department
Aurora Police are trying to identify two suspects in a Christmas Eve double homicide in a Boston Street home.
Credit: Aurora Police Department
Credit: Aurora Police Department
Credit: Aurora Police Department

Anyone with information is asked to call Metro Denver Crime Stoppers at 720-913-7867 or visit metrodenvercrimestoppers.com. Tipsters can remain anonymous and may be eligible for a reward of up to $2,000. 

Metro Denver Crime Stoppers works by assigning a code to people who anonymously submit a tip. Information is shared with law enforcement, and Crime Stoppers is notified at the conclusion of the investigation. 

From there, an awards committee reviews the information provided and, if the information leads to an arrest, the tipster will be notified. Rewards can be collected using the code numbers received when the tip was originally submitted. 

> More information about Metro Denver Crime Stoppers can be found here. 

> Additional Crime Stoppers bulletins can be found here. 

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