Police say woman's death in Northwest Baltimore fire was murder; man charged
By By Justin Fenton and The Baltimore Sun
Feb 11, 2013 | 1:24 PM
A 38-year-old Baltimore man has been charged in the murder of a 32-year-old city HIV outreach worker who he said he met on an online dating site, after being taken into custody Saturday driving her vehicle with blood stains on his clothes.
Monte Carter told detectives that he had been doing heroin and cocaine for days, driving around the city in Jennifer Conyers' 2004 Ford Mustang and using her ATM card to buy things that could be traded for more drugs, according to charging documents. He claimed not to have seen Conyers for "several weeks" before ending an interview with detectives, records show.
A day earlier, Conyers was found bound by electrical cords and wire in the basement of her Northwest Baltimore home, in the 5700 block of Highgate Dr. north of Pimlico Race Track, after firefighters were called there to extinguish a small blaze.
A crime scene, including a broken computer, was found on a first floor bedroom, and police determined she had been assaulted there and dragged into the basement, according to charging documents. Neighbors told investigators that they had seen Conyers' vehicle behind her home prior to the fire, but it was no longer there.
Police broadcast a description of the vehicle, and Western District patrol officers found Carter driving it at about 8:40 a.m. at the intersection of Pitcher Street and Fremont Avenue, police said. Carter had blood on his jeans and shoes, and said he had spent days doing drugs with a friend named "Kenny" who he could not identify, records show.
He said he had met Conyers on an online dating site several months ago, and acknowledged using her car and ATM card, according to charging documents.
Carter couldn't explain the blood on his clothing, and asked for an attorney, ending an interview with detectives.
A Baltimore Health Department spokeswoman confirmed that Conyers had worked there since 2008 in the bureau of HIV services, raising community awareness about HIV and helping to connect uninsured or underinsured patients with services. "She was a very valued employee, and we're grieved at the loss," she said.
According to court records, Carter, of the 5200 block of York Rd., has prior convictions for burglary, theft, and uttering false documents. He was being held without bond on charges of murder, robbery, arson and related charges in Conyers' death.
Four women have been murdered in Baltimore this year.