A Southeast Washington man had sex with his 17-year-old daughter and later stabbed her 15 times before dumping her body in a trash bin, federal prosecutors said Monday.
Prosecutors Monday charged Rodney J. McIntyre, 45, with first-degree murder in connection with the slaying of Ebony Franklin, whose body was found in an alley behind the 1000 block of Fairmont Street in Columbia Heights on Nov. 28. Police arrested McIntyre on Saturday.
On Monday in D.C. Superior Court, as Assistant U.S. Attorney Jocelyn Ballantine detailed how McIntyre’s semen was found in the girl’s body, several of her friends and family members who took up about four rows in the courtroom cried out before rushing out of the room.
Dressed in a white T-shirt and jeans with his arms and ankles shackled, McIntyre smiled, bowed and shook his head at times as he stood next to his attorney, Elizabeth Mullin of the District’s Public Defender Service.
Prosecutors based the charges largely on cellphone calls between Franklin and her father and on the location where the girl’s body was found relative to the usage of his phone the day she was reported missing, according to court documents.
Authorities said they also interviewed witnesses who said Franklin was with her father when she disappeared. Franklin lived with her mother in the Capitol Heights area of Prince George’s County, and her mother reported her missing Nov. 27.
According to her mother, Franklin had planned to meet her father in Columbia Heights and spend the weekend of Nov. 26 with him, court papers said. But McIntyre told Franklin’s mother that his daughter planned to spend the weekend with her boyfriend instead. Franklin’s mother is named as a witness in the case, and The Washington Post generally does not name witnesses of crimes.
McIntyre told police he and his daughter were supposed to meet in front of the Target store in the 3100 block of 14th Street NW on Nov. 26 at 1 p.m., but she never called, according to court papers.
“Ebony was dropped off in Columbia Heights to meet up with her father, but she was never seen by any other person ever again,” said Ballantine, who called the slaying “premeditated and deliberate.”
Authorities said McIntyre used his daughter’s cellphone to make calls and to text messages to her mother and others in an effort to blame someone else for her slaying. In one message, authorities said, McIntyre wrote, “Remember, the bitch told on my man nowyoo get her out the trash.”
McIntyre worked as a custodian at Keely’s Boxing Gym in the 2500 block of 11th Street NW, within a block of where Franklin’s body was found. On Nov. 27, between 2:47 and 4:28 p.m. McIntyre’s cellphone was determined to have been used near where the body was discovered, according to court documents. McIntyre denied being in that area.
Police interviewed McIntyre numerous times, according to court papers. During one interview, they confronted McIntyre about a possible sexual relationship with his daughter. When authorities asked him if his DNA would be on the victim, he told detectives, “I don’t know how to explain it” and said he would not admit a relationship with Franklin to them, but that he would tell her mother.
When Franklin’s body was found, authorities determined that his semen had been inside her for as long as three days. When confronted with the information, McIntyre told police that he provided Franklin with a bottle of his semen, which he said she used in an attempt to become pregnant.
After authorities challenged his statement, McIntyre then admitted that he and his daughter had sexual relations on “several occasions,” including the Tuesday before she was killed.
Magistrate Judge Karen Howze ordered McIntyre held in the D.C. jail until his next hearing, which was scheduled for July 7 before Judge Lynn Leibovitz.