Body of civil rights activist Sadie Roberts-Joseph was & # 39; topped with bleach to destroy evidence & # 39;
The body of Louisiana's murdered civil rights activist and landlord, Sadie Roberts-Joseph, was covered in bleach in an attempt to destroy vital evidence, researchers revealed Monday.
Roberts-Joseph, 75, was found dead on July 12 in the trunk of her car as a result of & # 39; traumatic suffocation including suffocation & # 39 ;.
One of her tenants, Ronn Jermaine Bell, 38, a convicted pedophile, was detained on Tuesday on charges of first-degree murder after his DNA was discovered on her body.
He was already in jail for not registering as a sex offender, which he has to do for the rest of his life after he was found guilty in 2007 of the sexual battery of an eight-year-old.
Although a concrete motive still needs to be suggested by the police, Bell would be left behind with $ 1,200.
Documents released by prosecutors on Monday show that a house search yielded two empty bottles of bleach.
Ronn Jermaine Bell (left) was accused of first-degree murder for the death of beloved community leader Sadie Roberts-Joseph (right) in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. A search of the 38-year-old's house yielded two bottles of bleach that had been poured onto the victim's body to destroy evidence
The death of Roberts-Joseph at the age of 75 shocked the community of Baton Rouge, where she was the founder and curator of the Occasionally African-American Historical Museum of Odell S Williams. She is chatting with the former Louisiana State Police Lt Col Murphy Paul (right) in 2017
Authorities also say they found small black fibers – presumably hair – on the two bottles, corresponding to some found on and around Roberts-Joseph's body.
The evidence was found on a site that he rented from the victim, just over 800 km from Roberts-Joseph & # 39; s house and about 5 km from where her body was found in the trunk of her own car.
Guard images collected by investigators would show Bell near the place where the car was found on the day of the activist's murder.
Bell later admitted that he was near the murder scene, but said he was never in the vehicle and had not seen Roberts-Joseph a few days before her death.
In a search warrant obtained by the observer on Monday, officers asked another search warrant to take samples from Bell & # 39; s "compare it to the fibers on the victim's body and the fibers on the bleaching bottles."
On Tuesday, Baton Rouge police officers announced Bell's arrest for first-degree murder. The suspect was already in prison because he had not registered as a sex offender
The body of Roberts-Joseph was discovered on Friday around 3.45 pm in the trunk of her white car (above). She was found almost five miles from her house
Signed on July 15, another order was filed the same day to get the suspect's salvia for DNA testing. Both requests were submitted a few hours before Bell's arrest.
Sara Clarke, the defendant's lawyer, filed a motion on Friday in which she theorized that the Bell & # 39; s police might have seized her illegally and planted it on Roberts-Joseph's body before the arrest warrant was obtained.
She claims that her client did not receive any kind of warrant when the police took her samples out of his head the day before his arrest.
The order in question describes that Roberts-Joseph was killed and then & # 39; placed in the trunk of her vehicle and then poured bleach onto her body & # 39 ;.
Before Bell's arrest officers investigated death as a possible hate crime, given the status of the victim as a prominent civil rights activist and the founder of the African-American History Museum of Baton Rogue.
But in a press conference last week where Bell was announced as the prime suspect, researchers said they no longer believed this as a credible line of investigation.
The map above shows the distance between the house that Bell rented and the house of Roberts-Joseph (1 km away) and where the victim's body was discovered about 5 km away
Community activist Roberts-Joseph (center) worked with the police on programs against drugs and violence
Bell was arrested in 2006 for the rape of a child who happened two years earlier, when the victim was eight and he was 23.
The lawyer reported that the girl did not immediately tell anyone because she did not think anyone would believe her. But after hearing other children talk about how it was wrong for people to do things like that, she said.
Bell was on trial in 2007 for aggravation of rape, but argued for the importance of the victim of her family.
He spent seven years behind bars and was released in 2013. After serving his full sentence, Bell was not on trial, but as a sex offender, he had to follow certain rules.
Bell & # 39; s most recent address in a sex offender database was six tenths of a mile away from Roberts-Joseph's home.
It is unclear whether Roberts-Joseph was aware of his sex offender status when she allowed him to live with her.
According to a report from Bell & # 39; s arrest on Tuesday, the suspect admitted that he was lagging behind with his rent payments, but Roberts-Joseph said to allow him to stay as long as he paid her some money.
Roberts-Joseph's handwritten data suggested that & # 39; the victim was planning to contact the suspect on the day of her murder … regarding late payments & # 39; said the report.
Roberts-Joseph depicted at the Juneteenth Festival in the museum she founded. She will be very remembered by the community
The museum (photo) would be renamed later but remains the legacy of Roberts-Joseph
A funeral took place on Monday for the murdered civil rights leader, who closed public mourning for more than a week in the bewildered city, hundreds of which allegedly participated.
Roberts-Joseph's daughter, Angela Machen, urged the community not to overshadow her life's performance under the circumstances of her mother's death.
"As much as I want to be home now, just wallow in my grief, I can't do that to her," Machen said. "She has worked so hard. She pushed. She got everything she could from the 75 years that she lived. & # 39;
In the 1980s, Roberts-Joseph founded a group that bridged the gap between law enforcement and community leaders in an effort to reduce the effects of drugs and violence in Baton Rouge.
The following decade she introduced the annual celebration of Juneteeth, which commemorates the day slaves were released in Texas, years after the Emancipation Proclamation was signed.
On Monday, a funeral took place for the murdered civil rights leader, who closed public mourning in the bewildered city for more than a week, hundreds of which allegedly participated
Roberts-Joseph's daughter, Angela Machen, urged the community not to overshadow her life's performance under the circumstances of her mother's death
She then founded the city's only African-American history museum in 2001, the Odell S. Williams now and then African-America museum, which is housed on the campus of the New St. Luke Baptist Church.
Mayor Sharon Weston Broome of the Baton Rouge, East Baton said at the wake: “There was no doubt that that museum was her passion. And she used it as a tool to unite people around history, around African American history, & # 39; according to WWNO.
Baton Rouge police chief Murphy Paul also expressed his shock about the news of her death, insisting that the news shocked his entire department.
"All of my police officers had a story about Mrs. Sadie," said Paul at the vigil. "What I pray for is what she stood for, the love that this community had for her. Let's take that energy, make it contagious, and let's start something else here in the town of Baton Rouge. & # 39;
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