Vallejo man accused of arson that killed son surrenders; former partner alleges prior abuse
VALLEJO, Calif. (KTVU) - With arson and murder suspect Darrylone Shuemake in custody, a previous girlfriend is speaking out about his history of domestic violence.
"We've known about this man for a long time and we've been fighting for our children for a long time," Susan Brown told KTVU.
"And we've had nothing but opposition from the people who are supposed to help us."
Brown has a son, 8, and a daughter 7, with Shuemake and a restraining order against him.
The Vallejo man surrendered Wednesday afternoon, easing Brown's fears he might harm her while a fugitive.
53-year-old Shuemake is accused of splashing gasoline on his current girlfriend Sunday morning, and lighting it, igniting a fire that killed their five year old son, sleeping in the same bedroom.
"I absolutely feel that little boy should be alive today if the District Attorney had done their job," declared Brown, "and if the justice system had worked the way it was supposed to."
The fire that Shuemake allegedly set shocked Brown, but she describes him as controlling, paranoid, and violent.
He went to prison for beating her six years ago.
"He poured cold water on me while I was sleeping, choked me until I passed out, hit me in my face until my eye was swollen shut and I went to the police that day," described Brown. .
Brown says in May of 2015, Shuemake was arrested for allegedly battering another woman, with whom he has a seven-year-old daughter.
That child claims he molested her more than once, and child welfare investigators investigated and substantiated it.
But the domestic violence trial dissolved in a plea deal, Shuemake received probation for felony vandalism in a plea bargain instead, and was freed.
"From May of last year until January of this year, he was in custody," explained Brown, "and they let him out.
That wasn't supposed to happen. Because they told us they were going to pick-up those molestation charges afterward."
Brown was so outraged she made flyers out of the CPS report, with Shuemake's picture and the heading: "Alert! Child Molester."
With the help of friends and family, she distributed them around Vallejo, in places Shuemake was known to frequent.
"If the District Attorney wasn't going to do her job, somebody had to let people know," exclaimed Brown.
Shuemake, after prison, was allowed weekends with the kids he has with Brown, even though he'd been convicted of beating their mom.
"My kids are going kicking screaming, and crying, saying 'No mommy, I don't want to go."
But Shuemake lost visitation rights after beating the children with a paddle so hard, it bruised their butts for weeks.
In recent months, Brown had warned CPS that little DeLeon Shuemake might be in danger, living with a father who had such a volatile history.
But the next thing she knew, DeLeon was dead in the fire and the woman he been with most recently was in the hospital with horrific burns.
Brown has her own suspicions about what happened.
"She had finally had enough, she knew she was next and she told him she couldn't do it anymore, and that was his reaction," surmised Brown.
Shuemake, after four days on the run, called Richmond Police from an intersection in that city Wednesday afternoon, and surrendered when they arrived.
He is from Richmond originally, and his mother still lives there.
Shuemake was described as suicidal when he turned himself in, and neighbors are convinced they saw him sitting, despondent, in front of his burned home in the hours beforehand.
After an extensive interview with detectives, he was transported to Solano County Jail in Fairfield.
KTVU inquiries to the District Attorneys office regarding Shuemake's past and current cases, were not returned.