NEW YORK (AP) — The mystery surrounding the killing of a pregnant woman deepened Monday, as investigators looked into a strange note left at the scene and discovered that her fiance was still married to another woman.
The body of Vindalee Smith, 38, was found Saturday morning in a pool of blood, a gaping hole in her neck. She was eight months pregnant and expected to deliver the boy in about two weeks, but the fetus did not survive.
The death was ruled a homicide, but no arrests have been made.
Smith, a devout Seventh-Day Adventist, had been planning to marry Anthony Jackman on Sunday in a small ceremony at her church. Most of her friends said they had not known her fiance long, if at all, and some didn't know his name.
But she could not have married Jackman legally because he has a wife in New Jersey. Police said the two are estranged, with Jackman living with his mother during the week and the wife living in their former home. A message left at the house believed to belong to the couple and one left at the home believed to belong to his mother were not immediately returned Monday.
Jackman was among friends and family interviewed by police. He was released, though police said no one has been cleared as a suspect.
Investigators discovered a bizarre typed note in the woman's apartment referencing the 2002 Washington sniper case that read: "I will kill 1 pregnant woman a month starting now until Lee Boyd Malvo is set free!" It was signed "the apprentice" with a smiley face.
It's not clear what, if any, relevance the note had to the death of Smith. Investigators are trying to determine whether it represented legitimate evidence or a ruse meant to throw them off track.
Malvo was 17 when he went on the cross-country killing spree with John Allen Muhammad. The pair was linked to 27 shootings across the country, including 10 fatal attacks in the Washington area. Malvo is serving a life sentence with no parole in Virginia. Muhammad was executed in Virginia in 2009.
Malvo testified that a second phase of the plan included shooting a pregnant woman.
Smith, who has four other children in their teens and 20s, had been living in a basement apartment in the East Flatbush section of Brooklyn and had recently moved in. Police said there was no sign of forced entry, and no weapon was recovered.
It's not clear whether Jackman was the father of her unborn child.
Smith had joined the her church about three years ago, said Andrew Connor, a deacon.
"She was dedicated to her family," he said. "She was beautiful and this is very surreal."
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This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (10/15-10/21)
31 photos Launch gallery
1. Just a NY girl with BIG dreams....
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2. HAPPY CHILDREN=QUALITY PARENTING. We don't always see eye to eye on everything and that's normal. We're human beings. But we come together and do it right for what's important, the kids. We are not enemies, we are parents. And we are parents 1st. S/O to @monyettashaw for making Mason's bday memorable. S/O to @itscrystalsmith at home taking care of our other lil' Prince. ❤️❤️❤️ THIS IS WHAT CO-PARENTING LOOKS LIKE. #Blessed #Happy #AboveTheDrama #BiggerThanUs
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3. So happy to finally be able to share with you all that I’m the new Global Brand Ambassador for @Revlon! Follow my day on RevlonSnaps. Yay! Choose Love, Everybody! #RevlonXCiara #chooselove #ad
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4. Glam on point!!!@makeupbymotoko & @shaylinjoneshair #easybreezy @lifetimetv #beachesmovie #january2017 😘
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5. ✨True love ✨📸: @jessiemarrerophotography
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7. Today was not easy..but by the grace of God we all got through it. Words cannot express our gratitude for all of your Prayers, Positive thoughts and Support for us throughout the years. Tommy will be missed but most certainly never forgotten...And PLEASE don't ask "Where's Martin?.." he was there too...just not in this picture. Lol! God bless you all.. #LoveConquersAll #MartinShow
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9. West coast get ready for #RockyHorror. I will be live tweeting again. #letsdothetimewarpagain
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10. #THEKEYS pre order yours now ... Available everywhere #NOV22 #WeTheBest 🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑🔑
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11. We about to ROCK at #KCABlackBall!! All for our life-changing effort to end 🌎 AIDS.
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12. Today's #SNAPJACK is brought to you by @yazzthegreatest 😂😂😂💋💋💋
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13. Damn girl you kinda old to be headed to the Go Go. You coming in at the age they leaving. LMAO
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14. Daddy daycare B-Boxin with @acewellstucker @shopraisingace
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15. #FBF Naviyd & URV "LIL MONSTERS"
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16. HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ONE OF THE BIGGEST LEGENDS IN OUR HIPHOP HISTORY! @snoopdogg CONTINUED BLESSING AND LOVE FAMILY!!!!! REAL OG!
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17. Thank you for a beautiful night VSU! Let's do it again! #HOMECOMING
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18. Had a great time this morning with my familia Erica, Griff & Truth!!
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19. Check out my interview on @essence facebook live. #inmyownwords #nycpromo #day2
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20. #She💋 #tbt #TheCoveAtTheAtlantis #DawgPawsAndAll
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21. Bae #retailtherapy
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22. Why me and @coryhardrict got the same pose... and notee... new mouth #naked
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23. When my husband is my personal 'hype-man'! it kills me every time! 💜😂 #WHATNOW #lostfiles📷
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24. Diggy Simmons
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25. Hand full of @jacquieaiche 💙💎💍 @esnail_la 💅🏾
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26. SuperSoulers! You can watch my interview with Carl Lentz live from my Facebook page, tomorrow at 11a ET| 8a PT. #SuperSoulSunday
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27. 💋 .. When the friendship is easy like Sunday morning. ☀️
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28. Sunday mornings are the best........... hugs and cuddles with my angel
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29. #huggar16 #hellohuggars
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30. My gym is everywhere!.. #RnBMoney #TheGeneral 📸: @twelvepastseven
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31. Nothing I would rather be doing... Rocko setting up our movie, Romelō working on a puzzle & Laiyah singing and sharing all she's learning at school... I'm so grateful for the joy they've brought into my life ... Praying for peace , joy & love in the home of EVERY family ♥️ #HeadScarfPJSunday LOL 😂
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