BALTIMORE (NewsNation) — A man believed to have killed a young, successful CEO of a startup tech company in Baltimore was arrested, Baltimore Acting Police Commissioner Richard Worley announced Thursday morning.
Worley said police were able to track the suspect, Jason Billingsley, until they were able to apprehend him at a train station in Bowie, Maryland, around 11 p.m. ET Wednesday night.
The suspect, 32, was wanted for first-degree murder, assault and reckless endangerment, among other charges, for the death of 26-year-old Pava LaPere, police said.
Baltimore police found LaPere dead with signs of blunt force trauma in her apartment complex after she was reported missing late Monday morning. The Johns Hopkins University graduate founded the tech startup EcoMap Technologies while she was still a college student.
Billingsley was named as a suspect in the LaPere case Tuesday evening, with police saying local, state and federal law enforcement agencies were searching for him. Worley said it’s likely LaPere was killed the Friday before.
Billingsley was also wanted and arrested in connection to an attempted murder, arson and rape from Sept. 19 of this year, which also happened in Baltimore.
Police connected him to this incident where police say he handcuffed and duct taped a couple, raped the woman, slit her throat, doused them both in a liquid, then lit them on fire. All of this happened while a child was home.
“This was not a random act of violence,” Worley said.
Police said the victims were targeted by the suspect, and the suspect knew of the victims. It was also noted that Billingsley did not break into the location, but actually worked in the secure building.
LaPere’s family released a statement on Billingsley’s arrest, thanking the “tireless efforts” of the Baltimore Police Department and other agencies.
“We’re relieved to know he can no longer hurt other innocent victims. While this doesn’t change that Baltimore lost one of its most passionate, influential fans, our efforts remain focused on remembering and celebrating Pava Marie – her life, successes, and legacy,” the statement said.
Billingsley is a registered sex offender, sentenced in 2015 to 30 years in prison for a 2013 sex offense. However, he was released last October because of his good behavior in prison after serving just seven years of his total sentence.
In a statement to NewsNation, the Maryland Department of Public Safety said Billingsley was not paroled and was released on mandatory supervision, as is required by statute.
Multiple warrants have been issued for Billingsley, police said, and detectives are now reviewing all cases since October 2022 to the present day to determine any other connections.
One of LaPere’s neighbors told NewsNation that on Sunday, she saw a man she believes was Billingsley return to the apartment building where LaPere was killed and try to get inside by following the neighbor as she was entering.