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A Philadelphia man is accused of stabbing a mother of six who'd previously obtained an order of protection against him, according to authorities.
Raymond Thompson, 34, was taken into custody Saturday morning, less than an hour after the body of Ashley Lockhart, 34, was found stabbed to death inside a minivan, according to a statement from the Philadelphia Police Department e-mailed to Oxygen.com.
Police responded to reports of a “person with a weapon” on Chestnut Street at around 8:20 a.m. and found Lockhart in the front passenger seat of a 2002 Honda Odyssey. Officials say she sustained stab wounds to her neck and arms before she was pronounced dead at 8:27 a.m.
“The scene was held, [the] weapon was recovered, and [the] vehicle was towed,” police said in their statement, citing the motive as “domestic.”
Officials say Thompson was arrested at 9:04 a.m. on charges of murder and possessing instruments of crime. Fox Philadelphia affiliate WTXF-TV – which identified Thompson as the father of Lockhart’s children – reported Thompson voluntarily turned himself in to authorities.
Thompson allegedly told investigators he killed Lockhart out of jealousy, convinced that she was unfaithful in their relationship, law enforcement sources told the Philadelphia Inquirer. He allegedly claimed to have used heroin before deciding to surrender to authorities.
Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner said Thompson was known to police after Lockhart obtained what police cited as a “valid protection order” against Thompson.
It was unclear when Lockhart obtained the order and in what context.
“I don’t have specifics to answer for you on this man’s record,” said Krasner. “I do know that it’s very lengthy, and I know the case is extremely sad [and] very, very troubling.”
Joanne Pescatore, Chief of Homicide for the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office, stated Thompson and Lockhart lived with one another, despite the protective order, according to CBS Philadelphia affiliate KYW-TV.
“This particular victim obviously did the right thing,” Pescatore stated. “For some reason, she was back with this man in that particular van. I don’t know the circumstances of that; I don’t know what that was. But sadly enough, she is not going to be here to tell us what happened.”
Video surveillance allegedly captured Thompson walking into a local convenience before entering the minivan, where Lockhart was killed.
Thompson’s crimes reportedly date back to 2005, including an arrest for aggravated assault, per the CBS affiliate. The Inquirer reported Thompson was also sentenced to between six and 23 months in prison in 2018 after attempting to escape officers arresting him on a drug violation. Thompson pleaded guilty to risking catastrophe and resisting arrest after jumping onto the train tracks, according to the outlet.
It was unclear when Thompson and Lockhart began their relationship.
Lockhart’s family created a GoFundMe page for the six daughters Lockhart left behind, ranging from ages 5 months to 10 years old.
“Ashley was an amazing mother, dedicated working mother, and devoted mother,” loved ones said. “She loved all of her children and devoted her time [and] energy and made sacrifices for them that they will forever remember.”
Relatives referred to Ashley’s children as her “six charms,” noting the children would soon be returning to school.
“As this is extremely difficult to process and unimaginable to even begin to try and move forward, we, the family, would like to maintain the momentum for the girls,” the campaign stated. “As a family, we will make sure that all ‘6 charms’ (as Ashley called her girls) stay together and that their mother’s life and legacy is one that they will forever remember.”
Relatives gathered Monday night to memorialize Lockhart by releasing green and white balloons into the sky, according to KYW-TV. Attendees asked reporters not to film the ceremony out of respect for the victim’s daughters.
Thompson is expected to appear in court later this week.
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