Second Man Accused in Gambler’s Murder Caught Trying to Flee the Country

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It won’t bring 54-year-old Sree Aravapalli back, but at least justice can be served. After a visit to the Parx Casino in Bensalem Township, PA, turned deadly for the gambler, a second person implicated in the attack has now been arrested. Devon Melchor was taken into custody at an airport in Florida as he attempted to board an international flight.

Casino Visit Turns into Nightmare for Family

Last week, Aravapalli traveled from his home in New Jersey to the Parx Casino near Philadelphia, PA. Initial reports indicate that he had success at the gaming property, returning home with around $10,000 in winnings. However, his elation and good fortune came to an end when he was murdered in his New Jersey home in what has been determined to be a robbery of those winnings.

The investigation determined that 27-year-old Jekai Reid-John had followed the gambler to his home from the casino after witnessing his lucky run. He shot Aravapalli several times, while the victim’s wife and daughter were in the home, before escaping with the money. A few days later, and with the aid of surveillance from the casino and other locations, he was nabbed by police and is still waiting to be extradited to New Jersey.

Second Suspect Arrested

They say there’s no honor among thieves and, perhaps, Reid-John gave up his partner-in-crime. But, regardless of how it happened, police determined that Melchor had made a beeline for Florida after the attack and was trying to escape the country. It wasn’t clear at which airport he was arrested, but US Marshalls were able to step in and capture him as he was trying to board an international flight to an unspecified destination.

Both Melchor and Reid-John will be sent to New Jersey once the extradition orders are confirmed. They face charges of first-degree armed robbery and conspiracy, while Reid-John has already been charged with first-degree murder and additional crimes.

The evidence has been mounting to ensure the two receive the maximum punishment allowed. In addition to surveillance footage from the casino, there was also surveillance footage recovered from various locations along the route from the casino to the victim’s home, which identified the car the assailants were using. In addition, the criminals used John-Reid’s debit card to make a purchase at the casino, positively linking them to the gaming venue.

Aravapalli was the CEO of Aurex Laboratories, a company that, according to its website, is a ” fully integrated pharmaceutical company focused on the development and manufacture of the highest quality clinical supplies, tablets and soft gelatin capsules in the market.”

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