Columbia, Pennsylvania: 39-year-old Jason Shackelford is currently being held in the Lancaster County Prison following the Lancaster County District Attorney's Office approving a charge of criminal homicide against him for killing his girlfriend's daughter.
On Friday, February 10, the East Lampeter Township Police were dispatched to the Wyndham Lancaster hotel on a call related to a domestic disturbance.
At the hotel, officers made contact with Shackelford and his girlfriend, identified only as "victim 2" in the press release issued by the Lancaster County District Attorney's Office.
The woman told officers that she had been working the night shift on Wednesday, February 8 into February 9th and that she and Shackelford were currently going through a breakup.
In a voluntary statement provided to police, the woman told officers that she had been at work when Shackelford had sent her a text at about 6:35 am to inform her that her 12-year-old daughter, Elaina Smith, was sick in bed. A little more than an hour later, she returned home from work.
The woman alleged that she and Shackelford got into an argument and that he had then shown her her daughter's empty bed, saying that he had taken the girl to New York and that she was safe. The woman further alleged that Shackelford raped her before forcing her to go to the Wyndham Lancaster hotel with him.
Shackelford was also interviewed by police on Friday. During that interview he is said to have admitted to the Columbia Borough Police that he raped and strangled Elaina while they were watching a movie. After drinking some alcohol and smoking cigarettes for a few hours, he then attempted to conceal her body in a freezer in the basement.
During an initial search of the residence by the Columbia Borough Police Department, officers found the body of a juvenile female concealed inside of a chest freezer in the basement.
Additional charges may be filed pending the results of the autopsy and further investigation.
His preliminary hearing has not yet been scheduled.
According to Lancaster Online, Shackelford was previously convicted of sexual assault and had been required to register as a sex offender. Additionally, a protective order had been issued in 2020 following the assault, barring him from contact with the woman. A week later he violated that order.
- For healing for Elaina's family and particularly for her mother
- That bitterness would not take root
- For the truth to be exposed fully
- That the judge and attorneys assigned to the case would be God-fearing and rule for truth justice
- For the freedom of other individuals feeling trapped in domestic abuse
- That children in these relationships would be protected