Police continue to investigate abduction, murder-suicide

Friday, December 27, 2013
Markell Beasley

Authorities continue to investigate the abduction of 6-year-old Markell Beasley, who was found shot to death Tuesday evening in an apparent murder-suicide.

Police found Markell and 40-year-old Demetrius Beasley dead of gunshot wounds in a house at 308 S. Hanover St. after someone flagged down officers in the area to report the shootings, Cape Girardeau police reported.

On Thursday, the Jefferson City, Mo., Police Department sent out a news release clarifying the relationship between Demetrius and Markell Beasley and offering limited details on how Markell -- who lived in Jefferson City -- ended up in St. Louis, where Beasley apparently abducted him.

Demetrius Beasley was not Markell's biological father, was not listed on his birth certificate and did not have custody or any legal right to him, although police believe the boy may have seen Beasley as a "father figure," the release stated.

According to the release, two of Beasley's friends -- one of whom Markell's mother knew -- drove the boy from Jefferson City to St. Louis, but authorities believe they were unaware of Beasley's plans, the release stated.

Demetrius Beasley

Capt. Doug Shoemaker of the Jefferson City Police Department declined to comment on why Beasley brought Markell to Cape Girardeau or why he killed the child before shooting himself.

"We're being vague for a reason," Shoemaker said. "...We do not want to jeopardize this investigation."

He said the FBI, state and local law enforcement agencies are assisting in the investigation.

Authorities continue to investigate Beasley's relationships, Shoemaker said.

Markell's mother allowed him to travel to St. Louis to be with Beasley's family for a holiday party, Jefferson City police reported Wednesday.

According to a report in the Jefferson City News Tribune, Beasley sent Markell's mother a series of text messages telling her he would not return her son, made threatening statements toward anyone who might try to take Markell from him and told the boy's mother that "God would see Markell before she would."

At the time of the kidnapping, a first-degree child molestation case was pending against Beasley in Jefferson County, Mo., online court records show.

The Associated Press reported Wednesday that Beasley had earlier felony convictions in Cape Girardeau and St. Francois counties and that he had said he would not go back to prison.

Online court records show several criminal cases involving Beasley, although inconsistencies in addresses and variations in the spelling of his first name -- which appears as "Demitrius" in the Jefferson City kidnapping case, "Demetrius" in a 2005 Cape Girardeau County case in which he pleaded guilty to tampering with a motor vehicle and both "Demetrius" and "Demetruis" in a pair of 2005 drug cases out of Pevely, Mo. -- make it unclear whether all of the cases involve the same person.

epriddy@semissourian.com

388-3642

Pertinent address:

308 S. Hanover St., Cape Girardeau, Mo.

Map of pertinent addresses

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