Baltimore CEO, 26, Was Killed by a Repeat Offender Who Should Have Never Been on the Street, Officials Allege
Antonio Planas et al., NBC News, September 27, 2023
Police in Baltimore say they are searching for a repeat violent offender who should not have been free after a 26-year-old tech CEO was found dead at an apartment Monday.
Pava LaPere, the CEO and founder of EcoMap Technologies, whose accomplishments earned her a spot on the Forbes’ “30 Under 30” list, was found dead about 11:30 a.m. Monday at an apartment with apparent signs of “blunt-force trauma,” police said.
Police said Tuesday they had issued an arrest warrant for Jason Billingsley on first-degree murder and additional charges.
Officials said Billingsley, 32, of Baltimore, should be considered armed and dangerous.
“This individual will kill, and he will rape,” Baltimore Police Commissioner Richard Worley warned Tuesday afternoon at a news conference. “He will do anything he can to cause harm.”
In 2015, Billingsley was sentenced to 30 years in prison, with 16 years suspended, after he pleaded guilty to a first-degree sex offense, court records show.
The Maryland sex offender registry shows he was released from prison in October. The registry classified him in “tier 3,” which includes the most serious charges and requires offenders to register for life.
Court records show Billingsley also pleaded guilty to first-degree assault in 2009 and second-degree assault in 2011.
The police Special Investigations Section is working to determine whether Billingsley is linked to any other cases, police said.
Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott said Billingsley should not have been free.
“There is no way in hell that he should have been out on the street,” Scott said. “When the police go out and do their job, as they did in this case … and the state’s attorney goes out and does their work, gets the conviction, the conviction should be the conviction.
“We are tired of talking about the same people committing the same kind of crimes over and over again.”
Officials did not provide details about a possible motive in LaPere’s death or any possible relationship between her and Billingsley.