The Murder Tapes is looking at the killing of teenage couple Seren Byran and Danielle Marzejka by the latter’s brother, Robert Marzejka, at their shared home in Clinton Township, Michigan.
On August 23, 2018, Robert Marzejka attacked his 18-year-old sister Danielle and her 19-year-old boyfriend Seren with a hammer as they slept in their bed at some point during the morning. He then bound up their limbs with duct tape and asphyxiated them with tape and bags over their heads.
Robert then placed their remains into trash bags, which he hid in a shed at the back of the property he shared with the victims and his father and brother.
A few days later, Danielle and Robert’s father and brother were in the shed when the brother discovered the trash bags. When he opened the bags, he made the grizzly discovery of finding his sister’s body parts.
Robert Marzejka fled to Ohio
In the meantime, Robert had fled to Toledo, Ohio, where he was captured a week later by the Toledo Police Department with the help of US Marshals as he attempted to get a bus to Cinncinati.
A motive for the murders was never satisfactorily established; Marzejka’s defense attorney, Azhar Sheikh, said his client had mental illness and had heard voices on the night he murdered.
Sheikh said he asked his client “a million times” why he had committed the murders, but Robert was never forthcoming. He argued for leniency based on diminished responsibility.
However, the prosecution argued that Robert had carefully planned the murders; he had purchased the hammer and duct tape beforehand. He’d also bought a shovel indicating he’d initially planned to bury the young couple. He had also made a concerted effort to clean the crime scene and hide the bodies. In Toledo, he wore a wig to hide his identity.
In November 2019, a jury ruminated over whether or not Marzejka could be convicted of the lesser charges of second-degree murder or manslaughter. Still, ultimately, they decided he was guilty of premeditated first-degree murder.
At sentencing, the Macomb County Circuit Court Judge James Biernat told Robert, “you’re an evil man, and you’re going where you belong.” He was given a mandatory life sentence in prison without the possibility of parole.
More from The Murder Tapes
Follow the links to read about more crimes profiled on The Murder Tapes.
Previously, The Murder Tapes looked at the tragic case of 16-year-old Jeffrey Franklin, who was callously murdered by his adopted parents Ernest and Heather Franklin. The depraved parents tried to hide the killing of the disabled child by setting fire to their home.
Delvin’ Buckii’ Meadows was found late one night slumped on a neighbors porch in Blytheville, Arkansas; he had been shot dead. His murder remained a mystery for 15 months before the police arrested and charged 19-year-old Quincy Whitfield.
The Murder Tapes air at 9/8c on Investigation Discovery.