New charges for Navy veteran accused in death of Maryland woman

A retired Navy veteran accused in the 2017 death of a woman from Prince George’s County, Maryland, faces additional charges.

On Wednesday, a federal grand jury in Virginia indicted Eric Brian Brown on charges of kidnapping resulting in death, assault with intent to commit aggravated sexual abuse and sexual abuse, assault with intent to commit a felony, assault resulting in serious bodily injury, theft of personal property and stalking. The charges are in relation to the death of 19-year-old Ashanti Billie.

Billie last seen on Sept. 18, 2017. Her co-workers reported her missing when she failed to show up to work at a Blimpie restaurant at Joint Expeditionary Base-Little Creek in the Hampton Roads area of Virginia. Her body was found 11 days later behind a church in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Investigators believe DNA and cellphone evidence prove Brown stalked Billie, kidnapped her and dumped her body more than 300 miles away.

The new charges take the place of the original indictment in the case, which arose amid a fight over Brown’s competency.

A federal grand jury had indicted Brown last December on a charge of kidnapping resulting in death, where, if convicted, he would have faced a maximum penalty of death and a mandatory minimum sentence of life in prison.

Currently, Brown is not deemed competent to stand trial. His defense attorneys said he is “properly diagnosed with schizophrenia.”

Federal prosecutors hope to have Brown’s competency restored by forcing him to take medicine to treat his diagnosis. Brown’s defense team is fighting the prosecution’s request.

Billie’s case prompted the creation of the Ashanti Alert, which will allow for alerts to go out for critically missing adults who do not meet the criteria for Amber Alerts for children or Silver Alerts for seniors.

Mike Murillo

Mike Murillo is a reporter and anchor at WTOP. Before joining WTOP in 2013, he worked in radio in Orlando, New York City and Philadelphia.

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