Police have arrested three suspects in the tragic murder of an Indiana pastor’s wife and her unborn child.
Indianapolis Metropolitan Police arrested Larry Taylor, 18, on preliminary murder charges in connection with the killing of Amanda Blackburn and her 12-week unborn child, Fox News reported today. Police also arrested Jalen Watson and Diano Gorden in relation to the murder, according to the report.
Blackburn, 28, and her unborn baby died from a gunshot wound after what police believe was an attempted burglary around 8:30 a.m. Nov. 10, according to ABC News. Blackburn’s 1-year-old son Weston was in his crib when his mother was shot, but he was not harmed, according to reports.
As LifeNews previously reported, Pastor Davey Blackburn found his wife unconscious on the ground of their home with a gunshot wound to the head. He had just returned from the gym. Amanda was rushed to the hospital where she and her unborn baby died, according to reports.
Police said Monday that three men entered the Blackburn home and confronted Amanda. They said two of the suspects left the house to withdraw money using the pastor’s ATM card; then Taylor allegedly raped Amanda and shot her.
Police said they found the suspects after linking them to ATM receipts found in a car that the three had allegedly stolen earlier this month.
Police said the suspects likely were the same people who burglarized a home just two doors down earlier that morning. They said someone took television sets and laptops from the Blackburns’ neighbors.
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The three suspects will be charged with various crimes, including sexual assault and at least three more burglaries, according to the report. Prosecutors said they were reviewing the case to make a final decision on what charges Taylor would face in connection with the murder, according to Fox News.
Blackburn’s husband said in a statement that he was “extremely relieved” by the arrests, but said it doesn’t “undo the pain we are feeling.”
“Though everything inside of me wants to hate, be angry, and slip into despair I choose the route of forgiveness, grace and hope,” he said in a statement. “If there is one thing I’ve learned from Amanda in the 10 years we were together, it’s this: Choosing to let my emotions drive my decisions is recipe for a hopeless and fruitless life. Today I am deciding to love, not hate.”
The case is doubly tragic because both the mother and her unborn child were killed. However, the Blackburn’s unborn baby may not be recognized as a victim under current state law because he or she wasn’t viable outside the womb yet.
Indiana law recognizes unborn victims of violence if the killing of “a fetus that has attained viability” is murder, voluntary manslaughter or involuntary manslaughter, according to the National Right to Life Committee.
However, some experts say the person who killed Blackburn could face a harsher penalty because she was pregnant, according to USA Today. Legal experts predicted that the murderer could face 45 to 65 years in prison, the report states.