Vinh Van Nguyen was charged Friday with capital murder with three alternate charges of first-degree murder in connection with Tuesday’s triple homicide in southeast Wichita.
Dressed in green prison garb, Nguyen made his first appearance from the Sedgwick County Jail over a television monitor, speaking with an interpreter in Judge Joe Kisner’s courtroom.
Charges were read to Nguyen, 41, through the interpreter, but he said he did not understand what was being said. His court-appointed lawyer will meet with him Monday to further discuss the charges against him.
The death penalty applies to the capital murder charge. The Death Penalty Defense Unit has been appointed to represent Nguyen.
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His bond was set at $2 million. Nguyen is scheduled for a preliminary hearing at 9 a.m. July 10.
Nguyen is accused of killing three people just after midnight on Tuesday – Tuyet Huynh, 45; and Trinh and Sean Pham, 20 and 21 – at their home on South Beech. Nguyen was thought to be Huynh’s boyfriend; Trinh Pham was Huynh’s daughter.
Police arrived at the house and found Huynh dead in the master bedroom, Sean Pham dead in a hallway and Trinh Pham, his wife, dead in a basement bedroom. All had sustained multiple gunshot wounds. Sean Pham had also sustained blunt force trauma.
The Phams’ infant son was found unharmed in the bedroom with Huynh.
Nguyen, in a court document, said he worked at an auto body shop. In court Friday, he testified that he made about $1,000 per month; “sometimes more, sometimes less,” he said through the interpreter.