The December murder of Baltimore resident Jacquelyn Smith gained national attention, prompting Oprah Winfrey to voice hesitance over handing money to the homeless — Smith was reportedly stabbed to death by a panhandler.
The 54-year-old was reportedly killed just after midnight on December 1st, having given some cash to a vagrant through her car window.
Also present in the vehicle were the victim’s 52-year-old husband, Keith, and her 28-year-old stepdaughter, Valeria. Both have now been arrested for their involvement in her murder.
Just days after the tragedy, Keith and Valeria made tearful appearances at a press conference, telling the story of Jacquelyn’s goodnatured effort to help someone.
According to Keith, Jacquelyn offered money to a woman who was begging in the rain. While the window was down, a man who was with the woman came over and, under the guise of thanking Jacquelyn for her help, struck her with a knife. The two then allegedly took her purse and necklace.
But to some, the story possessed a fragrance not unlike the docks.
Such was the case with Jacquelyn’s brother, Trisvan:
“All the questioning has been specific to Keith. That kind of sums it right there. It never made sense. I told [detectives] from the very beginning there are no suspects out there.”
Trisvan told The Baltimore Sun his now-ex-brother-in-law moved out Jacquelyn’s two weeks ago, telling the family he was moving to Florida.
“I already know it’s Keith,” he said.
Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh denounced the evil of the murder and the (alleged) cover-up:
“Like everyone in our city, state and across this nation, we mourned the senseless killing of Jacquelyn Smith. To now learn that family members staged this brutal killing is beyond belief and represents a double tragedy. They were responsible for taking Jacquelyn’s life with unconscionable cruelty and contrived to do so in our city under the guise of random violence, exploiting the legitimate fears of our residents.”
On Sunday, warrants were issued for Keith and Valeria. They’re both being charged with first degree murder.
You never know what darkness lurks in the heart of man.
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