ANDREWS, SC (WBTW) – Two men charged with the brutal murder of postal employee Irene Pressley now face federal indictments, including federal drug conspiracy charges with a third defendant.
Pressley was ambushed and shot multiple times while delivering mail on her route at the corner of Senate and Morrisville roads in September of 2019. Her death has attracted national attention and prompted heartfelt tributes from the community.
Trevor Raekwon Seward, 22, and Jerome Terrell Davis, 28, both of Andrews, have been charged in a six-count federal indictment for their alleged roles. A third defendant, Ricky Jesus Barajas, 28, of Santa Rosa, CA, was charged with Seward and Davis for a drug conspiracy. Barajas and Davis were charged for use of a communication facility to commit a drug offense on the date of the murder.
Seward and Davis were initially arrested in the weeks following Sept. 23 on state charges related to Pressley’s murder. According to documents filed with the state court upon their arrest, just after 3 p.m., Seward and Davis allegedly shot Pressley multiple times with a semi-automatic weapon in an attempt to steal a package containing marijuana.
Additionally, numerous shell casings were found at the scene of the shooting and forensic laboratory results from the United States Postal Inspection Service indicated at least one fingerprint on a mail parcel that connected Seward to the murder.
Wednesday’s federal indictment charges Seward and Davis with a number of crimes related to the murder and a drug conspiracy during the time of the murder:
Seward and Davis are charged with killing Pressley “with premeditation and malice aforethought” while she was engaged in her official duties as a mail carrier.
They both face a sentence of no less than life in federal prison if convicted, and Barajas faces a maximum possible penalty of five years in federal prison. No final decision has been made regarding whether the Government will seek the death penalty.
“First and foremost, my heart goes out to Ms. Pressley’s family for their profound loss. She was an exceptional woman who spent a lifetime in service of her community,” said U.S. Attorney Peter M. McCoy, Jr. on Wedensday. “This indictment alleges one of the most serious crimes in the criminal justice system: murder. It marks the result of exhaustive efforts by our federal, state, and local partners to investigate every facet of this case, and to do right by Ms. Pressley and her family. This office will continue to rely on these partnerships and use every tool at our disposal to aggressively prosecute violent crimes against the citizens of South Carolina.”
Pressley, who was found dead in her vehicle in Andrews the afternoon of Sept. 23, had worked with the Postal Service for more than two decades. The federal charges come after an extensive joint federal, state, and local investigation involving more than 70 law enforcement officers.
The case was investigated by the United States Postal Inspection Service, South Carolina Law Enforcement Division (SLED), 3rd Circuit Solicitor’s Office, North Charleston Police Department, and the Williamsburg County Sheriff’s Office.
Seward and Davis also are charged with obstructing the delivery of United States mail by means of actual or threatened force; Seward is charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition, and carrying a firearm in furtherance of a crime of violence and causing the murder of Pressley by shooting her; Seward and Davis, along with Barajas, are charged in a marijuana distribution conspiracy; and Davis and Barajas are charged with using a telephone to facilitate the drug conspiracy on the date of the murder.
Assistant United States Attorney Nick Bianchi is prosecuting the case.