Murder charges filed against man after woman found in wooden chest

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INDIANAPOLIS (April 10, 2014) – A man now faces murder charges after a woman’s body was found inside a wooden chest at an east side apartment complex.

Marion County Prosecutor Terry Curry said James Wade Jr. is charged with murder in the death of Jazmine Trammell. Police arrested Wade earlier this week. Trammell’s body was found on March 23 inside a wooden chest in the Maison Gardens apartment complex.

According to the probable cause affidavit, employees at the apartment complex found Trammell’s body. She had been stabbed multiple times, investigators said. Wade emerged as a suspect because his phone number was among the last ones Trammell had called on the day she disappeared.

jazmine trammell

Jazmine Trammell

Wade lived in Maison Gardens near the location where the wooden chest was found. A blood sample in his apartment matched that of Trammell, investigators said. Court documents also said Wade’s brother called the property manager from Florida to report that he “recognized the chest as his deceased mother’s chest she had given to his brother” years before. When a detective questioned Wade’s brother, he said his sister might be more helpful. She told police it resembled the chest “but could not be certain” it was the same one, court documents said.

Wade told investigators the chest used to belong to his mother and that it was too heavy and he wanted to throw it away. He said he’d put it outside his apartment and used it to push the chest back and forth between his apartment and the dumpster. He initially told police he didn’t know anyone named “Jazmine” but did know a woman named “Jazz” who “used his apartment to ‘cook'” crack cocaine.

Police found blood stains and a large bleach stain in Wade’s apartment, court documents said. They also found spots of blood on one of the walls. Other evidence found in the apartment included swabs of blood and DNA, fingerprints, two broken kitchen knives, two bottles of bleach, a mop and mop bucket and a scrub brush.

Wade appeared in court Thursday for an initial hearing. A not guilty plea was entered on his behalf. His next court date is May 27.

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