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Authorities Reveal How Retired Navy Vet Is Connected To Md. Woman’s Death

Author: Alex DeMetrick

BALTIMORE (WJZ)– New details have been released about how a retired Navy veteran is connected to the murder of a 19-year old Maryland woman.

Ashanti Billie went missing from her job in Virginia in September and her body was found two weeks later.

Eric Brian Brown, 45, was placed in federal custody this week for kidnapping and murdering Billie.

RELATED: Retired Navy Vet Charged With Kidnapping Md. Woman Found Dead In NC

Billie grew up in Upper Marlboro and was last seen going to work at a Navy base sandwich shop in Norfolk, Virginia September 18. That same day her cellphone was found in a dumpster in a nearby neighborhood.

Her body was discovered behind a Charlotte, North Carolina church on September 29.

“The person or persons that decided they wanted to take our baby away from us and away from everyone who loved her, you are a coward. You don’t deserve to breathe,” said Ashanti’s mother, Brandy Billie.

Brown is a navy veteran, and was seen talking to Ashanti at her job on several occasions.

“I’m just appalled that this person, you know, is a veteran, that served our country, that’s supposed to help save lives, took another innocent woman’s life,” said family spokesperson Kimberly Wimbish.

The FBI report does not state the cause of death, but reveals signs that Ashanti was beaten and may have been sexually assaulted. It also outlines two connections that point to Brown.

Brown grew up near the Charlotte church where Ashanti’s body was found. Also, DNA evidence collected from Ashanti’s clothing match Brown’s DNA.

Before being arrested and charged, Brown claims he blacked out the night before Ashanti vanished, and has no memory of what he did for the next several days after.

Brown faces a maximum penalty of life in prison if convicted.

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