In October 2018, Lamont Stephenson landed on the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted Fugitives list for allegedly killing his fiancée and her dog four years earlier. He had been off the radar since the day of his fiancée’s murder on October 17, 2014. Suspicious circumstances led to Stephenson’s arrest by Maryland officials in March 2019.
Keep reading our Lamont Stephenson wiki to learn more about his heinous crimes, disappearing act, and recent capture by the FBI.
|About Lamont Stephenson|
|Birth||April 3, 1975 New Jersey|
|Height||5'6" to 5'7"|
Lamont Stephenson replaced Antwan Mims on the FBI’s Most Wanted list. Mims was arrested in July 2018 and charged with two Michigan murders.
Fugitive Wanted for Murder in Newark Added to the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted Fugitives List: Lamont Stephenson, a New … https://t.co/nAv0shoIGq
— FBI Newark (@FBINewark) October 11, 2018
On November 3, 2014, Stephenson was charged with homicide by the State of New Jersey.
On September 8, 2017, a federal arrest warrant was issued for Stephenson by the United States District Court of New Jersey after he was charged with unlawful flight to avoid prosecution.
A reward of up to $100,000 was being offered for information leading to his capture.
Who Is Lamont Stephenson?
When it comes to law enforcement, Lamont Stephenson is a ghost. Not only has he avoided police detection, but before the death of his fiancée, he had a clean record.
According to the FBI, Stephenson was born April 3, 1975 in New Jersey. He is a black man with black hair and brown eyes, but sometimes wears green contacts. He’s 5’6″ to 5’7” tall and weighs 220 pounds.
According to his Facebook page, Stephenson has a daughter named Chardonnay born on March 18, 1996.
Stephenson attended Bloomfield Tech High School in Bloomfield, New Jersey. That’s where he would have first met Olga “Ivy” DeJesus.
DeJesus’ friends say that Stephenson wasn’t sociable in school at all. He wasn’t part of DeJesus’ crowd and he certainly wasn’t her type, which happened to be bad boys. “He was a nerd,” Maritza Montalvo said.
The pair met again in June 2013 at a 20th high school reunion. After that, Stephenson reached out to DeJesus on Facebook and they started texting. Then he asked her out for a date.
At that time, Stephenson was working at Pep Boys Auto Parts & Service in Hackensack, New Jersey. He seemed stable, living a quiet life.
The two had a whirlwind romance beginning around October 2013.
Friends look back at them as an unlikely couple. “It was like a surprise to everybody. You never would have thought those two would have ended up as a couple,” said Sean Walker, who attended Bloomfield Tech High School with DeJesus and Stephenson.
But Felix DeJesus Jr., Ivy’s brother, said that his sister seemed happy with her new love. Felix describes Stephenson as a very respectful, well-spoken, religious man. Ivy’s friends and family didn’t know much about Stephenson’s background; he seemed to keep to himself. No one on Ivy’s side had met any of his friends or family.
In April 2014, Stephenson moved in with Ivy DeJesus, her daughter Kassandra, and their little chihuahua Lola.
In July 2014, on DeJesus’ 40th birthday, Lamont Stephenson proposed. Crying tears of joy, she accepted.
Friends described Ivy DeJesus as a loving single mom to her son and daughter and as a joyful, positive person.
“She was happy, fun-loving, easygoing—just a joy to be around,” Walker said. “Always smiling, always laughing. The same person I knew from high school.”
Brother Felix DeJesus Jr. said she “had a big personality, she was very outgoing.”
What Went Wrong?
When Ivy DeJesus became involved with Lamont Stephenson, her friends noticed a shift her behavior.
“I was seeing the change in her. She was not giving nobody a time of day. Everything was Lamont, Lamont,” said her friend Arlene Martinez.
That summer and fall, DeJesus was indeed preoccupied with planning her wedding. But then something seemed to change a little.
When October came, her friends said that DeJesus became more interested in time away from her fiancé, in spending time with her girlfriends instead.
Angela Varela, a coworker and friend of DeJesus, said DeJesus told her, “He’s kind of smothering me. He needs to go out and start doing things on his own.”
In the second week of October, DeJesus contacted Martinez. She told her friend that she was worried something was going on with Lamont Stephenson. Her intuition told her he wasn’t at his full-time job as he should be.
Martinez had a coworker call Pep Boys and ask for Stephenson…but they said he wasn’t at work.
When DeJesus asked her fiancé about it, he lulled her worries by saying that he’d been in a meeting. Ivy DeJesus believed him at the time. She told her friend Martinez that she was over it.
However, the truth was that Stephenson had been fired on September 24. He’d been lying to his fiancée since then, saying he was going to work every day.
Some speculate that, on October 17, 2014, Ivy DeJesus finally found out the truth…and that’s what could have led to her murder.
DeJesus texted with her friends and her daughter the night of Thursday, October 16, 2014. That was the last they heard from her.
Lamont Stephenson Wanted for Murdering Fiancée and Her Dog
On Friday morning, October 17, 2014, Kassandra DeJesus hadn’t gotten her expected morning text from her mother. A little worried, Kassandra called and text Lamont Stephenson. No response.
Kassandra reached out to her mom’s friend Arlene Martinez who tried call both Ivy and Stephenson. When Martinez called Lamont Stephenson’s work number, they told her he didn’t work there anymore.
With their concern growing by the minute, Kassandra, her friend Ashley, and Martinez all met at the apartment Ivy DeJesus shared with Lamont Stephenson at the Stephen Crane Village housing complex in Newark’s North Ward.
They went in and found the house clean and tidy, as DeJesus usually kept it. No one answered when they called out.
And then they found poor Lola, dead in her dog bed. Scared to go upstairs to check any further, they called 911. They also got hold of Ivy’s cousin, Alex DeJesus.
Alex arrived before emergency responders, and decided to check the second floor.
He discovered Ivy in her bed, lying prone on her back with the blanket covering her except for her head and feet. He said she looked “peaceful and quiet”…but she was blue.
At 5:37 p.m., local police responded to the housing project 65 North Hawthorne Lane.
Officers did not see any signs of forced entry. Emergency services arrived and pronounced the victim dead.
Sergeant Paul Ranges of the Major Crimes Division, Essex County Prosectutor’s Office, said that Ivy DeJesus had bruising around her face and neck and petechial hemorrhaging, signs of strangulation. .There were no signs of a struggle, which means she was taken by surprise, possibly while sleeping. According to Sergeant Ranges, DeJesus was killed 12-18 hours before she was found.
Investigators also concluded that Lola, the dog, had also been strangled.
DeJesus’ purse was found at the house, but her keys and cell phone were missing. Some of Lamont Stephenson’s clothes were also missing, some. Police found no sign of forced entry.
With Stephenson missing and not responding to attempts to contact him, police focused their investigation efforts on him.
They were able to track Stephenson’s cell phone, discovering that he had indeed been in the area when Ivy had been killed.
Surveillance video from October 17 shows him boarding a light rail train at around 9:30 a.m. that day, going to Penn Station. A camera at the station shows that he waited around there for about half an hour and then got on a 10:15 a.m. New Jersey transit bus going south. No further movements were tracked after that time.
Authorities Fear Lamont Stephenson Could Strike Again
Lamont Stephenson is said to be the opposite of the gregarious Ivy DeJesus. He is described as calm, cool, and collected; a jealous and controlling manipulator. He’s also been difficult to track down.
“Compared to a lot of other subjects we go after, Stephenson has been difficult to find because he had no criminal history,” said Special Agent Carl Priddy. “Apart from his picture, law enforcement does not have even a set of fingerprints to help identify him.”
Despite the lack of physical clues to his whereabouts, the FBI believes Stephenson may be in hiding in Virginia or the Carolinas. These are places where he has spent time with close family members. He also has a history of working with cars.
If he is in hiding with his family, they aren’t talking. His close family members have not called to report him missing.
“He could have assumed a different identity,” Priddy said. “Nobody in Virginia or the Carolinas would have reason to believe he is wanted for a brutal murder.”
The investigation has provided a possible motive for the murder. In addition to lying about losing his job, friends and family of DeJesus say Stephenson was very possessive and controlling despite his pleasant demeanor.
“They had a fairly short courtship before they were engaged and he moved in with her,” Priddy said. “People close to the victim said they were surprised by how quickly it happened.”
Stephenson has no prior domestic violence charges against him, but that doesn’t mean he isn’t dangerous.
Christopher Smith, a detective in Essex County, New Jersey, noted, “To strangle someone to death is an act of rage. God forbid he is living with another woman and he’s that possessive. He could do this to someone else.”
Priddy added: “There is no doubt that Stephenson is a threat to the community and should be considered extremely dangerous.”
Shortly after the murder, video surveillance at Penn Station shows Stephenson acting calmly, casually walking through the station, and looking around.
“He wasn’t in a panic at all,” Priddy said. “For him to be calm and collected after he had just strangled his fiancée shows a certain coldness and calculation. He is definitely capable of doing this again.”
Lamont Stephenson’s Arrest and Capture
In the early hours of March 7, 2019, a security company monitoring a rental truck business in Prince George’s County, Maryland called police to report a suspicious individual. That individual was Lamont Stephenson, who was reportedly sleeping in one of the trucks on the property.
He also had a gun in his possession.
When police officers arrived on the scene close to 2:00 a.m., Stephenson told them he was homeless and looking to escape the bitter cold, officials said. He also freely gave police his full name, while sharing that he might be wanted for crimes.
A quick search turned up the federal arrest warrant from New Jersey.
“Three Prince George’s County police officers in the early morning hours apprehended one of the FBI’s 10 Most Wanted,” said Police Chief Hank Stawinski. “There are precious few individuals in law enforcement who have the place to say such a thing.”
FBI Newark Special Agent in Charge Gregory Ehrie expressed relief at a news conference in New Jersey.
“One hundred and 47 days ago, I stood in this room and spoke to members of the press with my partners from the local and state entities behind you and we said that the world becomes a very small place and we warned Mr. Stephenson that he would be found.”
Olga DeJesus’ brother Felix DeJesus was also in attendance at the Newark conference. He said the family was “overwhelmed” and “happy.”
“For four years I emailed the prosecutor’s office,” Felix said. “I communicated with everyone there, the FBI, the Newark PD, everybody, and this was the result. And we are grateful for it.”
A New Murder in Washington, D.C.
According to reports, it turns out that Stephenson was also a suspect in a crime committed hours earlier in Washington, D.C.
On the night of March 6, at around 8:30 p.m., police in Washington, D.C. found a 40-year-old woman, Natina Kiah, dead in her apartment. The mother of four and her cat had been stabbed to death.
Officers were responding to a welfare call at her apartment.
Family members of the victim told local media the two had been dating. Kiah, who worked in security at a homeless shelter, was reportedly unaware of Stephenson’s fugitive status. He was living at the shelter at the time, the family said.
Washington police now have a warrant out for Stephenson’s arrest in connection to Kiah’s murder, according to a rep for the Metropolitan Police Department.
During his March 7 arrest, Prince George’s County police say, Stephenson confessed to committing a crime in the D.C. area the night before.
In a statement posted on the department’s official Facebook page, authorities said Stephenson is currently being held by the local Department of Corrections while he awaits extradition to New Jersey.