LOCKPORT, N.Y. (WKBW) — The family of Terri Lynn Bills lined the hallway outside a Niagara County courtroom on Tuesday morning, awaiting the arraignment of 36-year-old Yasin Abdu-Sabur.
Abdu-Sabur was charged with second-degree murder in the June 2015 homicide of 46-year-old Bills. He pleaded not guilty to the charge.
Approximately two dozen people from the families of Bills and another Niagara Falls homicide victim, Loretta Jo Gates, were in court to hear Abdu-Sabur's plea.
Bills' dismembered body was found in the basement of a Niagara Falls home on Willow Avenue.
"When I saw his face, I saw the face of a killer not a human being. I didn't see a man who had remorse - not even in the courtroom" added Joshua Highway, Terri Bills' nephew through marriage.
Loretta Gates was killed in 2012; her body was also found dismembered. Her homicide remains unsolved. Both victims were related through marriage. Niagara County District Attorney, Caroline Wojtaszek, said Bills' homicide is not connected to the death of Loretta Jo Gates because Abdu-Sabur was incarcerated on a separate conviction at the time of Gates' death.
That was heartbreaking news for the Gates family who had gathered at Niagara County Court to watch the arraignment. "We were thinking there was some closure over the weekend, and now, it is up in the air again" said Arthur Gates, Loretta's father.
During a post-arraignment news conference, law enforcement emphasized they will continue to search for Gates' killer - a search that can be more focused now that Abdu-Sabur has been charged in Terri Bills' death.
"Collectively with law enforcement, we do not give up our quest to hold those accountable for taking the life of one of our citizens," said Detective Captain Kelly Rizzo from Niagara Falls Police.
Family lining court. They were warned to keep their cool as this could get emotional pic.twitter.com/tYX9luNOcd— Jeff Slawson (@Jeffslawson) March 3, 2020
Abdu-Sabur was remanded to the Niagara County Jail without bail. He is due back in court on March 16.