Travis Blake, 29, the prime suspect in a crime involving Jamaicans in New York, Was arraigned in Queens Supreme Court on Monday on murder charges.
A grand jury indicted Blake on murder and other charges in connection with the triple murder of his girlfriend and her family at a South Jamaica residence in June of this year.
According to Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz, he was arraigned on a six-count indictment charging him with first-degree murder, three counts of second-degree murder, and two counts of criminal possession of a weapon.
According to the indictment, during the early morning hours of June 24, police from the 113th Precinct in Jamaica in Queens, New York, US, responded to a 911 call at the defendant’s residence and discovered the body of 55-year-old Karlene Barnett, believed to have been Blake’s girlfriend.
The bodies of Barnett’s son, 36-year-old son Dervon Brightly, and her 22-year-old niece Vashawnna Malcolm, who was visiting from Jamaica, was also found.
The three had been dead for approximately two days.
According to the charges, video surveillance footage from the house’s entry points on June 22 showed Blake in the backyard around 2:50 a.m., apparently bleeding from a hand injury and using a hammer to drive a nail into a beam of wood.
The defendant then entered the house where the victim Brightly had entered about 30 minutes before. Hours later, around 7:30 p.m., Barnett entered the house and never left.
According to the charges, on June 24, a witness who also lives in the house noticed an odor coming from Malcolm’s bedroom and opened the door to find her body. The witness then contacted 911.
According to the indictment, detectives discovered Malcolm dead in her second-floor bedroom, undressed from the waist down and bound with duct tape, with several puncture wounds to her chest.
During a search of the house, police gained entry through a locked basement door and followed a trail of blood to a bedroom where Barnett was discovered with head trauma injuries and several puncture wounds on her body.
Brightly was also discovered by the police. He was found in the basement with head trauma injuries and puncture wounds to his body.
Detectives recovered several bloodstained items, such as a hammer, screwdriver, and a beam of wood with a nail embedded in it, according to the charges.
A bloodstained bucket, bloodstained bottles of household cleaner, and a mop were also found.
In addition, the police recovered the cellphone, passport, and valuables of the defendant Blake at the house.
NYPD’s Regional Task Force in Bar Harbor, Maine, tracked down Blake on June 30, and he was extradited to Queens after he fought the process over the summer.
“As alleged, this defendant carried out a horrific triple murder and then fled the state, leaving a devastated family and a mourning community in his wake,” Katz said. “Such brutal disregard for human life will not go unanswered. Despite being on the run immediately following the murders, the defendant is now in custody and faces justice in our courts.”
Travis Blake was ordered to return to court on October 18 by Justice Ushir Pandit-Durant.
Blake faces up to life in prison if convicted.