National News

Victims Identified in Troy Homicides, but Killer Is Still at Large

Posted December 28, 2017 8:33 p.m. EST

NEW YORK — The victims of a quadruple homicide that shocked Troy this week have been identified, but their killer remains at large.

There is “a lot of information coming in,” Chief John Tedesco of the Troy Police Department said Thursday, but nobody is in custody, and the police do not have a profile of the suspect. Victory Christian Church in Albany is offering a $5,000 reward for information leading to an arrest, and Capital Region Crime Stoppers is offering up to $1,500.

The police identified the victims as Shanta Myers, 36; her children Jeremiah, 11, and Shanise, 5; and her partner, Brandi Mells, 22. Jackie Robinson Sr., the pastor of Oak Grove Baptist Church, told The Times Union of Albany that Myers also had an older son who was not home when the killings happened.

Jeremiah was a student at Troy Middle School, and Shanise attended School 14. The superintendent of the Troy City School District, John Carmello, wrote in a letter to parents that grief counseling would be available to students after the holiday break.

“Our hearts are broken, and our thoughts and deepest condolences are with their family and loved ones during this terribly troubling time,” Carmello wrote. “The Troy City School District is a close and supportive community, and the loss of two of our innocent and promising children is especially devastating.”

Shanta Myers liked to cook, relatives told The Daily Gazette, a newspaper based in Schenectady. Jeremiah played basketball and was a member of the Troy Boys & Girls Club for six years. The club started a GoFundMe campaign for funeral expenses, and said any excess money raised would go to mental health care for people affected by the killings.

The family was found dead Tuesday afternoon in their basement apartment at 158 Second Ave., in a neighborhood of subdivided Victorian houses along the Hudson River. Tedesco said the number of victims, their age and the way they were killed — which he declined to describe — made the crime the worst he had seen in more than 40 years in law enforcement.

The killings drew comparisons to a 2014 case in which a couple and their two young sons were stabbed and bludgeoned to death in Guilderland, less than 15 miles from Troy. The perpetrator was never found.