St. Croix Man Wanted In Coliseum Cockpit Double Murder Pleads Guilty To Having 2 Ounces Of Cocaine
CHARLOTTE AMALIE — A St. Croix man who is a person of interest in a double murder in Estate Glynn two years ago, admitted in federal court to having two ounces of cocaine, authorities said.
Malachi Benjamin, 25, pleaded guilty before Magistrate Judge Ruth Miller to possession with intent to distribute cocaine, U.S. Attorney Gretchen Shappert said Friday.
Benjamin remains detained on separate drug conspiracy charges, according to Shappert. His sentencing date will occur at a later date.
According to court records, on June 14, 2018, Virgin Islands Police Department (VIPD) officers conducted a traffic stop in Upper Love, Frederiksted, of a vehicle operated by Glenn David with Benjamin in the front passenger seat.
After the traffic stop, officers approached Benjamin to advise him that he was a person of interest in recent double homicide on St. Croix, and Benjamin responded by immediately fleeing the scene on foot.
After Benjamin fled the scene, David, the driver and owner of the vehicle, granted officers permission to search his vehicle.
A forensic team of VIPD officers later recovered three pre-packaged baggies of suspected cocaine hidden inside of a Pepperidge Farm container.
The suspected cocaine weighed approximately two ounces and was recovered from the passenger side floor of the vehicle where Benjamin had been seated.
A field test of the contents of the baggies yielded a positive test result for cocaine.
The forensic team also collected buccal swabs from cocaine baggies hidden inside of the Pepperidge Farm container and submitted the swabs for DNA analysis.
When compared with DNA previously collected from Benjamin, a DNA laboratory confirmed that Benjamin was the source of DNA collected from the cocaine wrappings.
In February, Benjamin, Ivan James, Kai James, Joh Williams and Tillisa Caesar were arraigned before U.S. Magistrate Judge Ruth Miller on a twenty-count superseding indictment charging drug conspiracy, possession with intent to distribute cocaine and marijuana, and possession of firearms during and in relation to a drug trafficking conspiracy,
Benjamin is also one of four men wanted for questioning in connection to a double homicide at the Coliseum Cockpit in Estate Glynn on February 17, 2018.
Police said 32-year-old Luis Colon and 46-year-old Jacobo Garcia were shot to death on that Saturday afternoon.
This cocaine case was investigated by U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the Virgin Islands Police Department (VIPD).
IT was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Delia Smith and Donna Rainwater.