The life of Pava LaPere, a 26-year-old tech entrepreneur and CEO of EcoMap Technologies, was tragically cut short in her Baltimore apartment on Monday. The young CEO, who had been recognized by Forbes in their 30 Under 30 list in 2023 for her contributions to social impact, was found dead with indications of blunt-force trauma to her head.
Baltimore Police Department has since issued an arrest warrant for 32-year-old Jason Dean Billingsley, who is currently on the run and is deemed to be armed and dangerous. The police have yet to disclose further details about LaPere’s death, and it is currently unknown whether there was any prior connection between LaPere and Billingsley.
LaPere was the driving force behind EcoMap Technologies, a Baltimore-based startup with approximately 30 employees. The company is known for its development of artificial intelligence tools aimed at improving customer communications and information accessibility.
The Baltimore Medical Examiner’s Office is currently in possession of LaPere’s body, with an autopsy yet to be conducted. Meanwhile, Billingsley, who was previously convicted of attempted rape and other violent crimes in 2011, was released on parole in October 2022 after serving a portion of his 30-year sentence.
Baltimore’s Acting Police Commissioner Richard Worley issued a strong warning about Billingsley, stating, “This individual will kill and he will rape. He will do anything he can to cause harm.” Worley also urged Billingsley to surrender, assuring him that law enforcement agencies across the state and the U.S. Marshals are actively searching for him.
Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott expressed his anger over the situation, stating that Billingsley should never have been released. EcoMap Technologies also released a statement expressing their profound shock over LaPere’s death and extending their unwavering support to the LaPere family. The company also expressed gratitude to the authorities and emergency services for their efforts and professionalism.
LaPere’s untimely death has sent shockwaves through the Baltimore community, where she was highly regarded for her leadership and commitment to social impact. Delali Dzirasa, CEO of Baltimore-based company Fearless, who served as a mentor to LaPere, remembered her as a determined leader who always made space for others.