36-year-old Ernest M. Roach of Racine, Ohio was recently charged with the murder of 16-year-old Ericka Brown of Cross Lanes, West Virginia. The pair had allegedly met on craigslist for sex but unlike a lot of stories I’ve posted in the past, in this case, the victim is said to have posted the ad.
On Aug. 3, Brown allegedly posted to the site the ad “seeking men – w4m I’m looking for $$ ill (sic) do anything for it, I am a girl,” along with a telephone number.
Roach allegedly paid his victim twice for sex.
Ericka Brown’s body was found on the banks of the Ohio River wrapped in plastic and attached to a cinder block.
I have not yet seen a motive mentioned yet for the murder. I wonder if he was unaware of her true age and then freaked out when he found out she was 16. 16 may be the age of consent in both Ohio and West Virginia but once money changes hands it becomes child prostitution. Not to mention that Roach allegedly took her across state lines into Ohio.
Lastly, I can’t stress this point enough, parents please keep tabs on your kids’ internet activities whether or not this means on a computer or a cell phone. As I’ve said many times in the past parents really are the only real line of defense between internet predators and your kids.
UPDATE 9/20/2014: The feds have dropped charges against Roach so the state of Ohio can go forward in prosecuting Roach for murder.
I don’t know if Roach would be eligible but Ohio does have the death penalty and they’ve executed someone as recently as this year.
UPDATE 10/06/2014: Roach has entered a plea of not guilty.
UPDATE 5/2/2015: Roach’s trial has been scheduled to start on September 21st.
UPDATE 9/16/2015: Roach is expected to plead guilty at a hearing tomorrow.
UPDATE 9/19/2015: Roach has pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 19 years to life meaning that Roach will be eligible for parole in 19 years.