Murder counts hit home
Two of four people charged in the slaying of a London man 10 days ago had lived with him in the weeks before his death, The Free Press has learned.
Police have charged three men and one woman with first-degree murder in the fatal stabbing of Raymond Beaver, 43, who was killed during a home invasion at his east London home last week.
Beaver’s niece, Melissa George, and her boyfriend, Daniel Cavanagh, spent a month living at the Lansdowne Avenue home where Beaver was killed, family members and neighbours said.
The couple, both now charged in the deadly stabbing, were kicked out of the house earlier this month, said Beaver’s cousin, Lucy Carrigan, adding police were called to help them retrieve their belongings.
Tight-lipped police wouldn’t say whether they went to the Lansdowne Avenue home before last week’s homicide. “We can’t confirm any further details related to the investigation because it’s before the courts,” Const. Sandasha Bough said Wednesday.
Donald (Donny) Solomon, the partner of Beaver’s late mother, was renting the two-storey house and living there with Beaver, his 13-year-old daughter, his uncle and his uncle’s girlfriend.
“So many people lived there,” said a neighbour, who asked not to be identified.
Nobody has returned to the yellow-sided house since more than a dozen police vehicles swooped in shortly before midnight Oct. 2.
A piece of plywood covers a back window that was broken during the home invasion. Shards of glass litter the ground.
James Lynette said he was the last person inside the house before police cordoned off the scene.
Lynette, 35, was at his house on nearby Nelson Street when a frantic woman showed up at his door asking for help.
That woman, he said, was the girlfriend of Beaver’s uncle, George Janes.
Lynette said he jumped in his truck and drove one block to Beaver’s house, where he saw Janes staggering down the street.
“He looked hurt. He had blood all down his head,” Lynette said.
Janes, 47, previously said he was sleeping upstairs at his nephew’s when multiple people burst into the house and stabbed Beaver in the neck.
While fighting off multiple intruders, Janes said he was struck in the head with a pipe, leaving him with a large gash on his scalp.
Lynette said he went into the house and found Beaver motionless on the ground in the basement living room, just outside his bedroom.
The memory of finding his friend dead brought Lynette to tears Wednesday.
“I needed to go to the funeral yesterday so I could see him in a different way than I found him,” said Lynette, whose daughter is a close friend to Beaver’s child.
Also charged with first-degree murder is Nicholas George, the son of Beaver’s niece, Melissa George, and Peter Townsend, the boyfriend of Beaver’s ex-girlfriend, Lisa Sager, who is charged with assault with a weapon and break and enter.
Two teens, neither of whom can be identified under the youth justice law, are also charged with break and enter in the home invasion.
Lynette welcomed the news that police have charged seven people, but said it’s little consolation.
“Closure is hard to come by at this point,” he said.