Real estate agent found dead in basement of Bowie home

May 27, 2007|By Madison Park and Ruma Kumar | Madison Park and Ruma Kumar,Sun reporters

The body of a real estate agent was found in the basement of a Bowie home he was trying to sell, Prince George's County Police said yesterday. Authorities said they also found the charred remains of his car less than four miles away in Glenn Dale.

A builder who was at the home in the 12800 block of 9th St. to inspect remodeling work found Samuel D'Costa, 36, of Beltsville, in the basement with multiple gunshot wounds to his upper body. The body was discovered about1:30 p.m. Friday.

"We really have more questions than answers at this point," said Cpl. Clinton Copeland, a Prince George's County police spokesman.

D'Costa's family had filed a missing person's report about 1 p.m. Thursday, Copeland said, after he didn't come home Wednesday evening.

D'Costa's sister-in-law, who traveled from her home near Burlington, N.C., to Beltsville on Friday, said D'Costa's wife last saw him Wednesday, as he rushed out saying he had a lead on an interested buyer for a house.

Besides his wife, D'Costa also leaves behind two young sons - a 2-year-old and a 7-month-old. The family held a candlelight vigil late yesterday. D'Costa was a Bangladeshi immigrant who moved to the U.S. about 17 years ago, said Anna Quiah, his sister-in-law.

"He usually tells [his wife] exactly where he's going, when he's going to be back, but he was in such a hurry that day, he didn't tell her much about where he was going to be," Quiah said. "These things are not supposed to happen to good people like him."

D'Costa moved to Maryland 11 years ago, waiting tables at restaurants and working the cash register at area convenience stores, his sister-in-law said.

He bought two 7-Eleven stores in Silver Spring, Quiah said. He has been in real estate for nearly two years, family members said.

He was a devout Catholic, community-minded, and devoted to his children, she said.

An Internet search showed that D'Costa sold homes for Re/Max Sails Inc. A woman reached at D'Costa's workplace said they had no comment at this time. The Prince George's County Police Department had no suspects or motives yesterday.

madison.park@baltsun.com ruma.kumar@baltsun.com

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