Suspect in the murder of tech CEO Pava Marie LaPere, 26, at her Baltimore home arrested 30 miles from crime scene
Jason Billingsley was identified as the prime suspect shortly after LaPere was found dead at her apartment complex in 300 block of West Franklin street on Monday.
Billingsley, 32, was apprehended around 11.30 pm on Wednesday,at a train station in Bowie, Maryland
The suspect is a repeat offender who was released in October on good behavior from a 30-year sentence, after only seven years, following a conviction for violent rape and robbery in 2013
The first assault case for the 305lbs, 6’4 ex-con was in 20109, aged 18, but a similar offense in 2011 led to conviction and his serving two years in jail
Evidence from an attempted arson, murder, and rape on Sept 19, that left two victims with critical burn injuries, linked Billingsley to the murder of LaPere a week later
305lbs, 6’4 ex-con Jason Billingsley, [photo], 32, named as the suspect wanted for the brutal murder of Baltimore technology CEO Pava LaPere, was arrested at a train station in Bowie, Maryland on Wednesday night– 30 miles from the crime scene
The prime suspect in the brutal murder of a tech startup CEO in Baltimore has finally been arrested after two days on the run.
Jason Billingsley, 32, was apprehended on Wednesday by cops at a train station around 30 miles from where Pava LaPere, 26, was found bludgeoned to death.
Billingsley was tracked by law enforcement to the MARC Train Station on Laurel-Bowie Road in Bowie, Prince George’s County, at 11.10pm.
The ex-con who has a history of violent crime was taken into custody without incident, police said.
He was identified as the prime suspect shortly after LaPere was found dead at her apartment complex in 300 block of West Franklin street on Monday.
The battered body of Tech startup CEO Pava LaPere [photo], was found on the rooftop of her apartment building in Mount Vernon, an up market section of the city of Baltimore, Maryland, on Monday. Police do not believe that she knew her assailant
Police in Maryland Tuesday issued an arrest warrant for the violent felon after identifying Jason Billingsley who was released from prison almost a year ago as a possible killer.
At a press conference held on Thursday, Acting Baltimore Police Commissioner Richard Worley said investigators tracked Billingsley’s phone, his financial transactions, his social media as well as surveilled his known addresses, spoke with multiple witnesses as part of the effort to track down the suspect. Detectives who tracked him to a close proximity earlier this week were close to capturing him, before he eluded authorities, Worley revealed.
Worley said there was no forced entry to LaPere’s apartment, which was in a secured building. He said it remains unknown whether there was a connection between the suspect and the victim.b
Jason Billingsley has a history of violent robbery and sexual crimes, including strangling and raping a woman at knifepoint which landed him with a 30-year prison sentence.
Billingsley’s mother, Scarlett, [left], has come out to apologized profoundly to LaPere’s family, saying: ‘If my son did it, I really apologize because I don’t know what happened to make him do that’
Meanwhile the suspect’s mother, Scarlett, earlier apologized to the victim’s family, adding that she doesn’t understand what could have motivated her son – who has was let of jail on early release a year ago – is responsible.
After the 305lbs, 6’4 ex-con was named a suspect in LaPere’s murder she came out pleading that he turn himself in when she last heard from him on Tuesday.
‘I told him that he needs to turn himself in, but I really don’t think he’s going to do that because he’s scared,’ she told WJZ.
‘I don’t know where he is, he don’t even call me but I’ve been trying to call him. He texted me one time to say that he’s OK.’
After seeing his face on a TV news report she said: ‘I screamed. I cried. I can’t understand what happened…that he would do something like that.
‘I am so sorry that this happened to her, and if my son did it, I really apologize because I don’t know what happened to make him do that.’
LaPere was described as having ‘untiring commitment’ to her company and to the city of Baltimore
26-year-old LaPere who had grown her company to an $8 million enterprise was a member of the Forbes 30 Under 30 class of 2023
Now 32, Jason Billingsley committed his first assault in 2009 at age 18.
Aged 20 in 2011, he committing a second assault leading to a conviction. He served a two-year prison sentence for that second attack.
On Wednesday details emerged of the 2013 violent sex crime which led to a another conviction and a 30-year jail sentence, but he was paroled last year for good behavior after just seven years,.
Prosecutors said Billingsley had posed as a Good Samaritan before he strangled and raped a woman in her 20s at knifepoint. He approached her as she sat in the street in the wake of a ‘verbal argument’ with her boyfriend.
He introduced himself as ‘Jason’ and asked the distressed woman, who is now 35, what was wrong before offering her a place to stay for the night.
Billingsley was released from prison in October 2022 for ‘good behavior credits,’ despite being sentenced for strangling a woman and raping her at knifepoint years earlier
But when they got to the location he told her they would have to climb through an unlocked window as he had lost his keys, according to court records.
‘They both sat on a bed and talked. She states that ‘Jason’ told her he wanted to have sex with her. And at that time she told him that she wanted to leave,’ the complaint reads.
‘Jason then struck her on the face and placed both his hands around her neck. He began to apply pressure around her neck. He told her she was going to do what he said or he was going to shoot her.’
‘He told her to get on her knees in front of him. She stated that she complied and got on her knees in fear he would harm her.’
After forcing the woman to perform oral sex, Billingsley took $53 from her wallet.
As he left the house, he growled: ‘You better not tell anyone about this. My aunt is a police officer. Know one (sic) will believe you,’ according to the complaint.
He was convicted for attempted first-degree rape, false imprisonment and assault and was sentenced in 2015. Of the 30-year prison sentence, 16 were suspended and five years were supervised probation.
Evidence from an attempted arson, murder, and rape on September 19 that left two victims with critical burn injuries, linked Billingsley to the murder of LaPere [photo], a week later
With good behavior credits he was able to walk free in October last year despite having an original release date of 2043.
Police issued a fresh arrest warrant for him Tuesday along with a stark warning to the public that the convicted sex offender has a warped history of rape and violence.
He remains listed as a Tier 3 sex offender, the most serious of the classifications.
Billingsley was also connected to an attempted arson, murder, and rape on September 19 that left two victims with critical burn injuries.
Mourners flooded a vigil held in memory of the CEO on Wednesday Pava Maria LaPere in Mount Vernon, Baltimore on Wednesday
Evidence in that case linked Billingsley to LaPere’s death a week later.
Police found the 26-year-old Johns Hopkins grad inside her apartment on September 25, showing signs of blunt-force trauma.
She was the founder and CEO of EcoMap Technologies, a Baltimore-based tech start-up.
Billingsley is not believed to have known LaPere, who lived on the seventh floor of the building and whose beaten body was found on the roof.
The badly beaten body of LaPere, who lived on the seventh floor of the building on West Franklin St. which also housed her office, was found on the roof. Her body which showed signs of ‘blunt-force trauma,’ according to police was in a place that could only be accessed by a ladder
On Wednesday night, a remembrance ceremony was held for LaPere at the Washington Monument in Mount Vernon.
Her tearful father, Frank LaPere, told her friends and co-workers: ‘We’re going to take her away from Baltimore, but her presence will never leave here.
‘She’s always, always been a leader. Always been driven and creative, always intended to be a high achiever – didn’t mention it or say it or anything, but you could just tell she knew what she wanted to accomplish and there was nothing that could get in her way.’
Pava LaPere’s parents, Caroline and Frank LaPere and her brother, address mourners at the vigil to honor the slain entrepreneur, organized by EcoMap in Baltimore, on Wednesday night
The crowd then held a minute of noise for LaPere, after her former roommate said she would have preferred that to a minute’s silence.
EcoMap hosted a vigil for their founder the night of September 26, on the south steps of the Washington Monument in Mount Vernon.
A statement from the company described LaPere as a ‘leader, friend and partner’ with an ‘untiring commitment to our company, to Baltimore, to amplifying the critical work of ecosystems across the country, and to building a deeply inclusive culture.’
The LaPere family hold up each other while speaking at a Memorial vigil in honor of Pava Marie LaPere held In Baltimore on Wednesday night
Frank LaPere was seen being comforted by his son after he broke down in tears at his daughter’s vigil on Wednesday, flanked as her mom stood beside them, her hands crossed in sorrow
During a news conference on Tuesday, Mayor Brandon Scott remarked that Billingsley should not have been released from prison.
‘The conviction should be the conviction,’ he said, ‘and we have to make sure that folks are held accountable in every single way because we are tired about hearing the same people committing the same type of crimes over and over again.’