Exactly one week after earning a Master's degree in Business Administation, LSU Grad Assistant Charlotte Murray Pace was brutally stabbed to death in her Sharlo Avenue townhome. Twenty-three-year-old Murray, as her friend's called her, had gone home for lunch on Friday May 31, 2002 at around noon. Authorities say it was sometime between noon and 2 p.m. that Pace was killed.
Her body was discovered by her roomate at around 2:15 p.m. Judging by the inside of the townhome, authorities believe Pace put up a strong fight against her killer and even tried to escape from the home.
DNA taken from the crime scene would later point to the same killer that murdered Gina Wilson Green the previous September. In the weeks following the connection authorities focused on the similarities between Green and Pace. Aside from owning BMW's, both women lived three doors down from each other for a period of time on Stanford Avenue. Authorities do not believe the two women knew each other, however question whether the women knew their killer because of the fact that there was no sign of forced entry.
Derrick Todd Lee, is the prime suspect in the serial killer case. DNA has conclusively linked Lee to all six victims. However, the East Baton Rouge District Attorney's Office only sought an indictment in Pace's murder because they say it has the strongest evidence to get a conviction. That evidence includes:
-- Surveillance video of Pace at a local Baton Rouge carwash, moments before she was murdered.
-- Eyewitnesses placing Derrick Todd Lee in Pace's Sharlo neighborhood just hours before she was murdered.
-- Bloody shoe print in Pace's townhome, size 10-11, which is the same size and style Derrick Todd Lee is said to have once worn.
-- DNA evidence linking Lee to Pace's murder. Another point that is key in the case is the fact that Pace's body wasn't moved from her home to another location, unlike some of the other victims. A judge also approved a motion by the prosecution to include evidence in the case from the murders of serial killer victims Gina Wilson Green, Pam Kinamore, Dene' Colomb and Carrie Yoder.
Lee is scheduled to stand trial for the first-degree murder of Charlotte Murray Pace in March 2004. If convicted, Lee could face the death penalty.