Suspect in 2013 murder at UMES caught, indicted

This Remington Sportsman’s Series folding knife with a 3½ inch blade was used to stab Edmond St. Clair in February 2013. DNA from it was traced back to Davonta Braxton,who is now charged with murder.

Davonta Braxton

Edmond St. Clair was stabbed to death at UMES in February 2013.

PRINCESS ANNE — A Maryland State Police homicide investigation has led to the indictment and arrest of a Baltimore man for the murder of a University of Maryland Eastern Shore student more than four years ago.
The suspect charged is identified as Davonta M. Braxton, 25, of Baltimore. Braxton was arrested about 10:30 a.m. Oct. 20 on the UMES campus. He has been charged on an indictment from a Somerset County Grand Jury with second degree murder, manslaughter, first degree assault and second degree assault. He has been taken to the Princess Anne Barrack for processing and will later be transported to the Somerset County Detention Center to await his initial appearance before a court commissioner.

Braxton is charged in connection with the murder of Edmond St. Clair, 21, who was a UMES student. That took place around 9 p.m. on Feb. 16, 2013. St. Clair was a passenger in a car traveling across campus not far from the Student Services Center when St. Clair and those he was traveling with encountered several people who were walking in the street.

The investigation revealed St. Clair got out of the car and an altercation occurred, during which he was stabbed in the upper torso. He was taken to a hospital where he was pronounced deceased.

During a search of the area near the crime scene, State Police investigators and crime scene technicians recovered a Remington Sportsman’s Series folding knife with a 3½ inch blade. The knife was examined at the MSP Forensic Sciences Division crime laboratory. Evidence was found on the knife that positively connected it to the murder of St. Clair. Also found on the knife was DNA evidence from an unknown contributor.

Through their ongoing investigation of this murder, Homicide Unit investigators were able to identify Braxton as a possible suspect. A search warrant was obtained and DNA was obtained from Braxton. Scientists at the State Police Forensic Sciences Division Laboratory determined the DNA evidence found on the knife was a positive match with the suspect’s DNA.

Evidence developed in this investigation was presented by the Somerset County State’s Attorney’s Office to a Grand Jury. The presentation resulted in the criminal indictment.

Braxton has been a student at the university intermittently, but is not currently enrolled there. In a separate case in Somerset County Circuit Court, he was sentenced May 10 to two years of supervised probation after pleading guilty to marijuana and prescription drug possession with the intent to distribute.

Investigative assistance was provided to the State Police Homicide Unit by the Somerset County Narcotics Task Force, the Somerset County State’s Attorney’s Office and the University of Maryland Eastern Shore Police Department. Troopers and criminal investigators from the State Police Princess Anne Barrack also provided assistance, as did members of the Maryland State Police Forensic Sciences Division. Maryland State Police Homicide Unit investigators also thank officials from the University of Maryland Eastern Shore for their cooperation and assistance throughout the investigation.

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