Meshay Melendez and Layla Stewart:

After Bail Release, Accused Killer Arrested Again for Allegedly ‘Executing’ Ex-Girlfriend & 7-Year-Old Girl

Police have arrested a man accused of murdering his former girlfriend and her young daughter in Washington – weeks after he was released by authorities on domestic violence charges against the victims as he was facing an unrelated murder charge in another state.

Prosecutors allege that 28-year-old Kirkland Warren fatally shot his former girlfriend, 27-year-old Meshay Melendez, in the head and did the same to the woman’s 7-year-old daughter, Layla Stewart, KGW reports.

The victim’s bodies were found in a rural area near Washougal, Washington, on March 22.

Loved ones of the mother and daughter reported them missing on March 18, when police responded to an apartment in Vancouver, Washington, where Melendez and Stewart lived. The reporting parties said they had not heard from Melendez since March 11 and a friend said the woman had not been home for several days, according to the Vancouver Police Department.

One friend reportedly told police that she was babysitting Stewart on the evening of March 11 and that Warren picked her up. Melendez was in the vehicle, unresponsive and naked from the waist down, The Associated Press reports.

On March 19, Melendez’s mother located her daughter’s vehicle and police executed a search warrant at Warren’s residence the same day, ultimately arresting him on charges of witness tampering, violation of domestic violence orders, assault, drive-by shooting and unlawful possession of a firearm.

Warren had been arrested in early March in Washington for allegedly assaulting Melendez and firing a gun into her apartment, but he was able to post bail and was released, according to The Associated Press.

At the time of the deaths, Warren had also been out on bail on a separate murder charge in Arkansas, accused of killing someone in 2017 and leaving their body in a ditch, the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reports.

Investigators found blood, children’s clothing that appeared to be consistent with what Stewart was wearing and a purse with Melendez’s identification in one of Warren’s vehicles. Bullet casings were also discovered in the vehicle. Cellphone GPS data allegedly ties Warren to the location where the bodies of Melendez and Stewart were found.

A GoFundMe account is raising money for memorials for the slain mother and daughter.

Warren has been booked on two counts of first-degree murder in connection with the deaths of Melendez and Stewart. He is being held on $1 million bail in Washington and his bail in Arkansas has been revoked. Arraignment is scheduled for April 17.

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[Feature Photo: Meshay Melendez and Layla Stewart/Vancouver Police Department]