Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Kenneth Lamont Taylor - Repeat Sex Offender - Now Charged with First-Degree Murder

A convicted sex offender with an extensive criminal history has been charged with fatally shooting a man at a Cary apartment complex last month.

Investigators on Wednesday charged Kenneth Lamont Taylor, 33, of Durham with the first-degree murder of Jibrael Menelik.

Menelik, 28, was shot April 10 at The Grove at Cary Park on Pony Club Circle in northwestern Cary.

Taylor was still at large late Friday.

"We have been working around the clock with local, state and federal officials to locate him," Pat Bazemore, Cary's police chief, said in a statement. "We look forward to bringing resolution to this case, our community and, most importantly, Jibrael's family."

Police have not said whether they think Taylor fled the Triangle. But they think he has connections to New Jersey and New York.
Taylor is approximately 5-foot-7, 155 pounds, with black hair and brown eyes.

He is considered armed and dangerous, police said.
News of the charges brought mixed emotions to Menelik's family.

"I'm glad they've got a name," said Doris Dunn, Menelik's mother. "But this is just like living it all over again.

"I'm just praying justice will be done."
In 2000, police charged Taylor with second-degree rape in Durham County.

He was convicted of first-degree kidnapping and sentenced to three years probation, state records show.

Taylor is a registered sex offender who was charged in 2005 with first-degree rape of a child.

He eventually pled guilty to the lesser offense of taking indecent liberties with a minor and was sentenced to two years in prison.

Taylor was released in 2007, one month short of two years behind bars, state records show.

Taylor also has criminal convictions for trespassing, public disturbance, fictitious information to an officer, reckless driving, driving while impaired, failing to register as a sex offender, financial card fraud and felony possession with the intent to manufacture, sell and deliver drugs, court records show.
Cary police received several calls about gun shots at The Grove at Cary Park on the morning of April 10.

When they arrived, officers found Menelik in the breezeway of the 700 building, shot but conscious.

He was pronounced dead at Duke University Medical Center.

It was the first homicide in Cary since 2008.

The fear lingers

The case has shaken residents at the Grove, one of the town's few affordable housing communities.

Keesia McLain lives in the building adjacent to where the shooting took place.

"There's some relief knowing that they've identified somebody, even though they still have to catch him," she said Thursday.

McLain has seen the mug shot of Taylor, but she doesn't remember seeing him at the complex.

"There's so many strangers coming in here," McLain said. "We wouldn't have known the difference, if he came in day or night."

McLain said her request for an extra lock on her front door went unheeded. That in part has her thinking that she'll move out once her lease expires in February.

Police ask anyone with information about Taylor's whereabouts to call their local law enforcement office, the Cary Police Department at 919-469-4012 or Cary Crime Stoppers at 919-226-2746.

"25% of all sex offenders re-offend within 15 years"
.........Sarah Tofte

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