Laurel police: Man turns in self for N.Y. slayings

A 24-year-old man who walked into the Laurel police station on Christmas Eve and confessed to a double murder on Long Island, according to police, is being held pending an extradition hearing as early as Tuesday.

Jim Collins, a spokesman for the Laurel city police, said Jerry A. Lewis went to the station about 7:40 p.m. Saturday and told officers he had committed the slayings in North Bay Shore, N.Y. The bodies of 21-year-old Shakeela Planter and her 2-year-old son Jaiden Planter had been found in their apartment Friday, though local media reports said they had apparently been killed about five days earlier — the mother stabbed and the son beaten to death.

Collins said the Laurel police contacted authorities in Suffolk County, who already considered Lewis the chief suspect. The spokesman said three detectives from New York went to Laurel to interview the suspect, and based on what he told them applied for a murder warrant in their home state.

According to Collins, Lewis' mother lives a few blocks from the Laurel station. He said that after the interview, local and New York officers went to the mother's home and picked up some articles of evidence. Media reports said Lewis had been living with the victims the past four months.

Lewis is being held at the Prince George's County detention facility in Upper Marlboro pending an extradition hearing that will likely take place Tuesday, Collins said.

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