emfizz.com November 23, 2017

Retired Navy vet accused of killing girl found on church lawn

12 November 2017, 02:16 | Terri Saunders

Eric B. Brown was arrested in relation to the disappearance and death of Ashanti Billie

Eric B. Brown was arrested in relation to the disappearance and death of Ashanti Billie

According to court documents, Billie's co-workers at a Blimpie's restaurant on the Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek said Brown visited the establishment frequently and attempted to flirt with the victim "on several occasions".

The U.S. Attorney's office announced on Wednesday that they have arrested and charged a Navy veteran with the kidnapping of Ashanti.

Billie, a student at The Art Institute of Virginia Beach, was reported missing on September 18 after she failed to show up for her job at the Blimpie sandwich shop on the naval base.

Prosecutors said the 21-year Navy veteran visited the restaurant where Billie worked nearly daily. "I understand that we have these two charges but there are more charges to me", said Ashanti's father, Meltony.

Ashanti's parents say they're glad police caught the man accused of killing their daughter, calling Eric Brown "a monster".

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"How was it that this guy was allowed to roam around base?" he asked.

Brandy Billie said Wednesday that she was "grateful" Brown was charged, but had a lot of questions and wants to know how it was possible for Brown to live on the military base. "You preyed upon an innocent young lady", Meltony said of Brown. Her trousers were missing, and her arms were bound above her head inside a dark-colored hooded sweatshirt and shirt, the affidavit says. "And you took the freedom of my child". "Just evil and sick", Brandy Billie said. At times, his comments could devolve into openly crude comments about the woman's body, the affidavit says. Billie, the daughter of two veterans, was discovered 300 miles away from her job at a Virginia naval base where she was last seen.

Court documents claim Brown told a law enforcement official that he despised Black women and said they were "gold diggers" who "only want guys with all the money" in early October just days after her body was found. Brown reportedly conducted internet searches on his phone including the phrases "police looking for man", "Norfolk police looking for man in connection with homicide" and "missing woman and man", among others. Two miles away, additional video showed the vehicle stopped at a construction site where the driver tossed something into a dumpster. A construction worker contacted the Federal Bureau of Investigation and said he believed the man in the video was Brown. Billie's work shirt, a pair of dark-colored trousers and a shoe were found in "the rear compartment" of the auto, covered in dirt. He had attended vacation bible school at the church.

Brown was later arrested on unrelated charges. He faces a maximum penalty of life in prison if convicted.

Investigators said the first DNA profile was compared to Brown's, and the probability of this DNA profile belonging to any other person is 1 in 2.7 quadrillion. Brown said he "blacked out" on September 17, the night before Billie went missing, and had "no recollection of what he did for several days after that", prosecutors said.

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