A Baltimore man has been charged with strangling two women to death less than a week apart, and police said Thursday they are seeking the public’s help finding other possible victims who survived but did not report attacks.
Christopher Tyson, 22, already in jail on charges he strangled a woman to death in a hotel last month, allegedly killed a 21-year-year-old woman in South Baltimore the same way just six days earlier, police said Thursday.
Denita Barrett died of asphyxiation March 22 in the 2400 block of Annapolis Road, in the city’s Westport neighborhood, police said. A family member found her unresponsive in her home and medics pronounced her dead at the scene.
Tyson also is accused of strangling 37-year-old Ashley Lambert to death. She was found dead March 28 in a room at the Deluxe Plaza Motel in the 6400 block of Pulaski Highway.
On Thursday evening, Baltimore police released Tyson’s booking photo, saying they were doing so “in the hopes that other possible assault victims may come forward as detectives have not ruled out the possibility that Christopher Tyson may have committed other assaults where the victim(s) may not have reported the incident.”
While investigating Lambert’s death, police used surveillance camera footage recovered near the motel and saw Lambert with an unidentified man. Investigators tracked the man’s movements to a nearby store, where police said they were able to identify him as Tyson while looking into a purchase he’d made with a Visa card.
Police say that Tyson confessed to both killings. Anyone with information is urged to contact detectives in the Baltimore homicide unit 410-396-2100.
Court documents state that Tyson initially “attempted to repeatedly distance himself” from Lambert’s death when first questioned by police before ultimately confessing to murdering her after investigators confronted Tyson with images placing him at the crime scene.
The public defender’s office, which is representing Tyson, would not comment on the case.
Baltimore police Detective Donny Moses did not say what specific evidence led police to charge Tyson with Barrett’s death, citing only “the investigation in its totality” in a statement Thursday.
Moses added that the department is investigating why Tyson targeted Lambert and Barrett and are also looking for other potential victims to come forward if they’ve been attacked by Tyson.
The 22-year-old had faced previous charges of violence against women, including an open case in Anne Arundel County, where he’s alleged to have stabbed his sister and brother.
In that case, police wrote that Tyson punched his sister multiple times Oct. 12 after she asked him to get off a couch at a residence in Pasadena where he and his siblings were staying.
After his two brothers intervened, Tyson grabbed a knife from the kitchen and stabbed his sister and one of his brothers in their right arms before running away from the residence, police wrote.
He was charged initially with first- and second-degree assault as well as reckless endangerment, but prosecutors dropped the first-degree assault charges in November.
Tyson was placed on house arrest in October before Anne Arundel District Court Judge Kemp Hammond granted a motion that Tyson be released on his own recognizance on Feb. 5 on the condition that he stay with his aunt in Severn. He’d most recently shown up to a court date on March 31, three days after Lambert was found dead.
Police say that Tyson was arrested at a residence in the city’s Parkview/Woodbrook neighborhood.
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In two now closed cases in Baltimore City, Tyson was charged with second-degree assault about two months apart after allegedly getting into altercations with his girlfriend.
In January 2020, Tyson was charged with second-degree assault after police said they had to physically separate him and his girlfriend.
Tyson was charged with second-degree assault and malicious destruction of property, and was acquitted of both charges on Feb. 20, 2020, court records show.
On March 2, 2020, police received a disorderly conduct call alleging Tyson and a woman had been arguing. Charging documents state that Tyson slapped the woman during the argument and Tyson was charged with second-degree assault.
On Aug. 14, 2020, Tyson went before District Judge Martin Dominic Dorsey, who placed the case on the stet, or an inactive, docket.