November 1, 2021
PLAINSBORO, NJ (MIDDLESEX)–Middlesex County Prosecutor Yolanda Ciccone and Chief Fred Tavener of the Plainsboro Police Department announce a second Pennsylvania man has been arrested and charged in connection with the murder of a Township man.
On October 28, 2021, Devon Melchor, 26, of Upper Darby, PA was arrested and charged with one count of first-degree armed robbery and one count of second-degree conspiracy to commit armed robbery.
Melchor was taken into police custody by authorities in Florida where he was attempting to board an international flight. Melchor’s apprehension was made possible by collaborative efforts by members of the Plainsboro Police Department, New Jersey State Police Fugitive Unit, the New Jersey State Police Real Time Crime Center, the U.S. Marshal’s Fugitive Task Force,
U.S. Customs and Border Patrol, the Newcastle (Delaware) County Police Department, the Norristown (PA) Police Department, the Upper Merion (PA) Police Department, the Montgomery County (PA) District Attorneys Office, and the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office.
On October 26, 2021, at approximately 3:38 A.M., authorities responded to a residence on Briardale Court following a report of shots fired. Upon their arrival, officers located Sree Aravapalli, 54, of Plainsboro who sustained multiple gunshot wounds. Aravapalli was transported from the scene to a nearby hospital where he was pronounced dead.
An investigation by Detective William Atkinson of the Plainsboro Police Department and Detective Paul Kelley of the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office determined Aravapalli was fatally shot in his home during an attempted robbery. The investigation ultimately determined Jekai Reid- John, 27, of Norristown, PA and Melchor targeted Aravapalli at a casino in Pennsylvania and followed him home to his Plainsboro residence where the offense occurred.
Melchor remains in Florida pending an extradition hearing. Upon his return to New Jersey, he will be lodged at the Middlesex County Adult Correction Center pending a pre-trial detention hearing in Superior Court.
Anyone with information is asked to call Detective Atkinson of the Plainsboro Police Department at (609)799-2333 or Detective Kelley of the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office at (732)745-3330.
As is the case with all criminal defendants, the charges against Reid- John and Melchor are merely accusations and they are presumed innocent until proven guilty.