2nd man charged in death of N.J. man followed home from Parx Casino in robbery attempt
Devon Melchor, 26, of Upper Darby, was arrested in Florida as he allegedly tried to board a flight out of the country.
An Upper Darby man who was arrested as he was trying to board a flight in Florida to leave the country has been charged in connection with the fatal shooting of a 54-year-old New Jersey man who was followed home from the Parx Casino as part of a robbery scheme, authorities said Monday.
Devon Melchor, 26, is now the second man charged in the death of Sree Aravapalli, a married father of two who lived near Princeton and worked as an executive with a small pharmaceutical company. Melchor was charged with armed robbery and conspiracy to commit robbery, the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office said.
On Thursday, “Melchor was taken into police custody by authorities in Florida where he was attempting to board an international flight,” the prosecutor’s office said. Melchor remains in Florida pending an extradition hearing.
Jekai Reid-John, 27, was arrested Wednesday near his home in Norristown and was awaiting extradition to New Jersey to face a first-degree murder charge. The investigation is continuing and other charges are expected, prosecutors said.
Shortly after 3:30 a.m. Oct. 26, police responded to a report of shots fired at a home on Briardale Court in Plainsboro Township and found Aravapalli with multiple gunshot wounds. Aravapalli was transported to a nearby hospital and was pronounced dead.
Aravapalli was the CEO of Aurex Laboratories, which is headquartered in East Windsor, N.J.
Prosecutors said Aravapalli was 54, but the funeral home that handled his service listed a birth date indicating he was 53.
The Bucks County Courier Times, citing court documents, reported that surveillance video at the casino showed two men near Aravapalli throughout the night, and that one used a debit card at the casino belonging to Reid-John.
A white BMW followed Aravapalli home, and a matching vehicle was found parked outside Reid-John’s residence in Norristown, the Courier Times reported. Police conducted searches of the car and residence and found clothing matching what one of the men at the casino was wearing.
The NBC affiliate in New York reported that Aravapalli was seen cashing about $10,000 in winnings before leaving the casino.