Authorities are hunting for a 32-year-old man in connection with the murder of a tech CEO in Baltimore. The CEO was found dead with blunt-force trauma wounds inside her apartment. Jason Billingsley is wanted on charges of first-degree murder, reckless endangerment, assault, and other related charges in connection with the alleged murder of Pava LaPere.
This came as it was revealed that Billingsley likely committed a knifepoint sexual assault and arson attack just days before LaPere's murder that left two people critically injured and fighting for their lives, the DailyMail.com reported. Billingsley has a violent past. He was convicted of a "violent" crime in 2011 and received a 30-year sentence.
Murderer on the Run
However, Billingsley was released just seven years later on "good-time credits," as reported by the Baltimore Banner. The release was facilitated by then-District Attorney Marilyn Mosby, who was supported by billionaire Democratic donor George Soros.
"There's no way in hell he should have been out on the street," Democratic Mayor Brandon Scott told Fox News Digital.
"The conviction should be the conviction. And we have to make sure that folks are held accountable in every single way because we are tired of talking about the same people commit the same kind of crimes over and over again," he added.
"We have to stand up here and talk about someone's life cut down short by someone who should still be in prison."
The suspect was also arrested in 2009 and 2013 on charges linked to sex offenses, assault, and robbery, as confirmed by the police. Ultimately, he was convicted of sex offenses in the year 2015.
Billingsley was released on parole in October 2022, and it remains unclear whether he violated the terms of his parole. Described as a "repeat violent offender," the suspect is also wanted in connection to a separate case.
"He will kill and he will rape," Police Commissioner Richard Worley said at a press conference Tuesday.
Locals have been warned that Billingsley is "armed and dangerous" and should exercise caution.
"We implore residents to be aware of your surroundings at all times," Worley said. "He will do anything he can to cause harm."
Authorities have issued a public appeal for Billingsley to "turn yourself in," stressing that an extensive law enforcement effort, involving every police officer in Baltimore City, the State of Maryland, and the US Marshals, is actively searching for him.
"We will find you," the police commissioner warned.
Who Was Pava LaPere?
Pava LaPere was found dead in her upscale Mount Vernon apartment by the police on Monday morning, shortly after she was reported missing.
Baltimore Police received another call that directed them to her remains inside her apartment on West Franklin Street. The identity of the caller has not been revealed.
LaPere, the founder of EcoMap, was found to have suffered blunt-force trauma, as confirmed by the police. The medical examiner's office has taken possession of the victim's body.
Worley issued a stark warning Tuesday, saying he hoped the suspect was watching the press conference, saying: "Every single police officer in Baltimore and the state of Maryland is out there looking for you. We will find you, and we will prosecute you to the full extent of the law. So please turn yourself in."
LaPere, who was named a Forbes 30 Under 30 honoree, lived in the former Congress Hotel, now transformed into apartments. According to the building's management company Zahlco, one-bedroom apartments in this residence are priced at approximately $1,500 per month.
LaPere started her eco company while in her dorm room at Johns Hopkins University. The primary goal of her company is to provide accessible ecosystems information to all, using "powerful technology to digitize ecosystems," as stated on the company's website.
Following her tragic passing, the company released a statement extending condolences and expressing deep distress at the loss.
"Pava was not only the visionary force behind EcoMap but was also a deeply compassionate and dedicated leader. Her untiring commitment to our company, to Baltimore, to amplifying the critical work of ecosystems across the country, and to building a deeply inclusive culture as a leader, friend, and partner set a standard for leadership, and her legacy will live on through the work we continue to do," it said in a statement, according to CBS News Baltimore.