ELK GROVE, Calif. — While police recently arrested a man in Staten Island, New York under suspicion of a double killing in Alaska ― the news is causing deep pain for one family in Elk Grove.
Jeri and Anthony White said their daughter, 35-year-old Raechyl Blackshear, had been out of touch for a while when they got a call from Sacramento Police.
"They told us she was deceased," Jeri White said on Wednesday. "It wasn't just Raechyl, but my granddaughter Jayla."
The White family sat down for an interview with ABC10 after police arrested Jayla's father, 39-year-old Jalonni M. Blackshear, as a person of interest in the double killings.
"My daughter was a victim of domestic violence, it was carefully hidden," Jeri White said. "If you're in a domestic violence situation, don't fool yourself to believe that this can't happen to you."
Raechyl Blackshear was a nurse, her mother said. She also said Raechyl was health-conscious and the life of the party.
"You just gravitated to her personality. It's just her smile lit up a room and her personality was so intriguing," Raechyl Blackshear's stepfather Anthony White said.
The tragedy in Anchorage
She was suspicious for weeks leading up to the killing, not because of a perceived lack of communication from her daughter, but because of how she was communicating.
Both Raechyl and Jayla were meticulous about grammar, Jeri White said, so when texts started coming in without that same regard for grammar she said she knew something was not quite right.
According to Anchorage police, officers responded to a welfare check on a residence in the area around 1 p.m. on April 15. It was there officers discovered two people deceased in the house.
Police did not say how long the mother and daughter were deceased in the house, but Jeri White says she believes Jalonni Blackshear was posing as Raechyl Blackshear over text messages for at least two weeks based on how the texts were written.
"I'm just glad he's captured. No one has to be worried that he's going to show up and try to see my other grandchildren," Jeri White said. "I don't want to have to look at him."
Domestic Violence Resources:
- National Domestic Violence Hotline (24/7)
- Voice: (800) 799-7233
- National Human Trafficking Hotline
- Voice: (888) 373-7888
- National Sexual Assault Hotline (RAINN)
- Voice: (800) 656-HOPE (4673)
- California Coalition Against Sexual Assault (CALCASA)
- W.E.A.V.E.: Women Escaping a Violent Environment 1-866-920-2952
- RAINN: Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network
- NSVRC: National Sexual Violence Resource Center
- National Sexual Abuse Hotline 1-800-656-HOPE 1-800-656-4673