A suspect in the murder of 75-year-old Louisiana civil rights activist Sadie Roberts-Joseph is in police custody.
Ronn Bell, a former tenant of Sadie’s, has been charged with her murder after she was found dead in the trunk of a car near her home.
The coroner ruled Roberts-Joseph’s death a homicide from traumatic asphyxiation, potentially from strangulation, reported The Advocate.
“I’m heartbroken that our community has lost such a kind and selfless soul in such a violent, tragic manner,” lamented Easton Baton Rouge Sheriff Sid Gautreaux. “I have known and loved Ms. Sadie Roberts-Joseph for years and admire and respect her dedication to education and our community.”
DNA belonging to the suspect was discovered on Roberts-Joseph’s body, according to a police affidavit.
Bell, 38, has an extensive criminal history that includes a child-rape case and sex-offender registration violations.
“(Roberts-Joseph) was one of the standout matriarchs of Baton Rouge,” praised Baton Rouge Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome. “We will make her legacy a priority . . . because of what she gave to so many here.”