Woman burglarized by Blackburn murder suspects still shaken

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INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – An Indianapolis woman is sharing her story after police said three people broke into her home on the east side of the city.

Two of them are now charged in connection with the murder of Amanda Blackburn.

Jacola Searsbrook told 24-Hour News 8 she is still shaken up by what happened.

One of the Blackburn murder suspects said he wanted to kill Searsbrook, according to court documents.

The burglary victim lives about 30 minutes away from the Woods of North Kessler neighborhood.

She said she had no idea one of the suspects had thought about killing her before leaving. She learned about the details in court documents Monday afternoon.

A home security sign can be seen outside of the apartment of Searsbrook, but it was not enough to prevent intruders from breaking in almost three weeks ago.

“I woke up looking for my phone to make sure I get to work on time and I noticed that it was missing,” said Searsbrook. “Then when I came upstairs I noticed the patio door was opened.”

Searsbrook said the suspects knocked over her plants and got away with her laptop, purse, keys, and her car.

She thought it was just a bunch of kids causing trouble when looking through the surveillance photos.

“The dangers that they were ruthless and were contemplating taking my life never really crossed my mind at the beginning,” said Searsbrook. “But then once things started to get connected to the other one I knew I was just a breath away from being alive.”

According to court documents, someone cooperating with detectives told them Larry Jo Taylor Jr. 18, Jalen Watson, 21, and another suspect discovered they were on video and disconnected the camera.

The person cooperating went on to reveal to detectives, “Taylor wanted to kill the occupant because he was seen on camera. Watson and the third person convinced him to leave.”

The details are very disturbing to hear for Searsbrook. She said it could have been a different outcome that morning of November 10.

“I think the fact that I was still asleep you know? I think that may have convinced them a little bit better you know that I didn’t actually see them. He may not have a compelling fight if I had woken up,” said Searsbrook.

With the holidays right around the corner, Searsbrook said she is counting her blessings.

“You got to keep moving because life doesn’t stop, but unfortunately it’s just hard to bear. I don’t think even with them being caught I will ever feel safe,” said Searsbrook.

Detectives said the suspects used the stolen car as a getaway in the murder of Amanda Blackburn and another burglary on Sunnyfield Court.

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