Jermaine A. Lane had intervened in his neighbor’s disputes with her ex-boyfriend once before.
By CHRISTINE VENDEL
The Kansas City Star
In December, he helped shoo Rondell E. Robinson from her house in the 7000 block of Jackson Avenue, according to police reports.
Late last month, she again called on Lane when Robinson banged on her door despite a court order preventing Robinson from contacting her, according to court records.
But this time, Robinson, 41, ended up dead in her backyard.
Investigators have been looking for Lane, 35, since Jan. 29, when Robinson’s body was discovered “covered in blood” by his ex-girlfriend when she returned from work that morning.
Detectives searched Lane’s home last week. Court records filed to secure the search warrant and police reports obtained by The Star provided new details.
A witness told police that Robinson had been calling his ex-girlfriend repeatedly the evening of Jan. 28, the documents said.
Court records said Robinson went to her home, encountered Lane — who had been asked to come over — and got into a “physical confrontation” with Lane.
The woman saw Robinson lying in her backyard before leaving for her 11 p.m. work shift, police said, but she thought he was alive. The next morning she repeatedly sent text messages to Lane asking him to call her “ASAP,” according to the records.
When detectives arrived, Lane was standing outside with the woman. He then went home, but he was gone when police tried to find him.
Police found a cellphone case next to Robinson’s body but no cellphone. In their request for a search warrant, detectives said they were looking for cellphones used by Lane and Robinson, clothing worn by Lane on Jan. 28 and trace evidence like blood, hair and fibers.
In the search, police seized two cellphones, a pair of bloody blue jeans, ammunition and two pepper foggers.
Robinson and his ex-girlfriend had a tumultuous history, according to police reports and court records. The woman called police on Robinson several times in 2011 for allegedly violating court orders of protection.
The morning after one of those incidents, she found her car had been vandalized. Someone also set her front porch on fire Dec. 8 and poured a flammable liquid in her car, according to police reports.
In that incident, the woman told police that Robinson refused to leave her house after an argument over keys about 3 a.m. She locked herself in her bedroom and sent her cousin to summon Lane.
Lane told Robinson to leave, according to police reports. Robinson told Lane it “wasn’t his business” and threatened, “You better watch your (expletive),” but he left.
The woman ignored several calls from Robinson in the next two hours, and the smoke detectors in her house began sounding at 6:30 a.m. No charges were filed in that case.
Robinson’s relatives said they don’t know why Robinson went to his ex-girlfriend’s house last week or how he got there. He worked his construction job Jan. 28, then was dropped off by his boss at a friend’s house.
Police would like to find out who brought Robinson to the house on Jackson Avenue. Anyone with information should call 816-474-TIPS (8477).
Relatives of Robinson said they didn’t want to comment until the police investigation was finished, but they questioned why the woman didn’t call police if Robinson was violating a protection order. They said they think Robinson had “moved on” with a new girlfriend.
Robinson left behind an adult son and several younger children.
To reach Christine Vendel, call 816-234-4438 or send email to email@example.com.