St. Louis – A federal grand jury returned an indictment charging Anthony D. Jones, Jr., 28, of Bridgeton, Missouri, for his role in the May 4, 2019 carjacking and death of victim Jessica Vinson. The indictment charges Jones with carjacking resulting in death, possession of a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence resulting in death, felon in possession of ammunition, felon in possession of a firearm, and witness tampering.
According to court documents, on May 4, 2019, Ms. Vinson’s body was recovered near the 5300 block of Vernon Avenue in St. Louis City. Investigation revealed that she had been shot. Her car, a 2015 Dodge Charger, was missing and her home in the 4300 block of Maffitt Avenue had been burglarized.
On May 6, 2019, St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department (SLMPD) officers attempted to conduct a traffic stop of Ms. Vinson’s vehicle, which fled at a high rate of speed and eventually crashed near an exit ramp at I-70 and Grand Avenue. Anthony Jones fled from the driver’s seat of the vehicle and a female fled from the front passenger seat. Police located Jones, who was hiding, and arrested him. Officers also recovered a pistol from the vehicle. The investigation also revealed that Jones sent electronic communications threatening to harm individuals who were aware of his violent conduct related to Ms. Vinson.
The St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives are investigating these current charges.
The case was handled by Special Assistant United States Attorney (SAUSA) Jen Szczucinski as part of the Safer Streets Initiative. The initiative was launched by Attorney General Schmitt and U.S. Attorney Jeff Jensen in January of 2019 as an unprecedented state and federal partnership to prosecute violent crime in St. Louis. Since April 2019, lawyers from the Attorney General’s Office sworn in as SAUSAs have filed over 200 charges.
If convicted, carjacking resulting in death and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence resulting in death carries a maximum penalty of life imprisonment or death; felon in possession of ammunition and felon in possession of a firearm carries a maximum penalty of 10 years imprisonment and a fine of $250,000; and witness tampering carries a maximum penalty of 20 years and a fine of $250,000 on each count.
Charges set forth in the Indictment are merely accusations and do not constitute proof of guilt. Every defendant is presumed to be innocent unless and until proven guilty.