Arrests made in murder of Indiana pastor’s pregnant wife

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (WISH) — Two men were arrested and charged for the murder of Amanda Blackburn, the Marion County Prosecutor’s Office announced Monday.

Larry Jo Taylor Jr., 18, and Jalen Watson, 21, have been charged with murder and additional felonies related to burglaries at three other homes Nov. 10, the morning Blackburn, a 28-year-old pregnant wife of an Indianapolis pastor, was killed in a home invasion.

UPDATE: DNA, cell phone records help find suspects in murder of Indiana pastor’s pregnant wife

Davey Blackburn, Amanda Blackburn’s husband, returned home from the gym to find his wife face down in blood on the living room floor, the probable cause affidavit states.

According to the probable cause affidavit, Taylor, Watson and a third person are accused of burglarizing two homes before entering Blackburn’s house.

A vehicle was stolen during the first burglary, as well as personal items. The second burglary happened near the Blackburn home.

Taylor and Watson then entered the Blackburn home through the unlocked front door, according to the probable cause affidavit.

Watson and the third person left the Blackburn home and drove to an ATM to use Blackburn’s debit card. The two were in communication with Taylor via phone. Taylor was later picked up from the Blackburn home and all three left before Davey Blackburn arrived home from the gym.

Amanda Blackburn, right, with her son and husband. (Photo Provided/Resonate Church)
PHOTOS: Pictures of the Blackburn family

Surveillance cameras at LA Fitness verified Davey Blackburn’s whereabouts at the time of the murder.

Taylor allegedly told witnesses he killed Amanda Blackburn. Blackburn died of a gunshot wound to the back of the head, and she is believed to have been shot three times in total.

A pink sweater found inside the stolen car was swabbed for DNA. That DNA was identified as belonging to Watson.

Cell phone records helped lead investigators to the suspects, the probable cause affidavit explains.


5:23 a.m. — A 911 call is placed to report the first burglary.

6 a.m. — Davey Blackburn leaves his home for L.A. Fitness.

6:36 a.m. — An ATM receipt shows Amanda Blackburn’s card was unsuccessfully used to withdraw $500.

6:54 a.m. — $400 is successfully withdrawn using Amanda Blackburn’s card.

7:05 a.m. — A witness tells police she saw a man dressed in black walking down the street while talking loudly on the phone.

8:17 a.m. — A home on Sunnyfield Court, the same street where Blackburn lives, is reported burglarized.

8:22 a.m. — Davey Blackburn calls 911 to report he found his wife injured and unconscious.

The next morning, Amanda Blackburn was declared dead.

Marion County Prosecutor Terry Curry held a press conference Monday afternoon laying out the criminal charges of the case. IMPD investigators and IMPD Chief Hite also released details on what went into solving the case.

Investigators say many officers working the case worked without sleep to bring justice to the Blackburns. They also said Blackburn’s neighbors were, “helpful, instrumental and why we’re here today.”

Curry said the third person of interest could be charged along with Taylor and Watson. The suspects are from the northwest side of Indianapolis.



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