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Edgewood murder victim fought for his life before suspects went on a crime spree

Crime spree stretched into Baltimore County
Harford County man murdered inside Edgewood home
Posted at 4:06 PM, Mar 02, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-03 09:27:26-05

MIDDLE RIVER, Md. — Police say evidence found inside his Edgewood home suggests 71-year-old Gerald Champ struggled to defend himself before he was struck in the head and killed.

His cell phone carried messages from Armando Moreno Junior and Ashley Pearl Zentz, a couple he had befriended, seeking money from him in the days leading up to his murder.

Edgewood murder suspects' night of violence

“It’s absolutely repulsive,” said Chantal Sigmon, the victim’s daughter. “There are no words to describe how betrayed our entire family feels.”

We now know the same couple who allegedly murdered Champ stole his Ford Explorer and drove into Baltimore County where they allegedly committed a second home invasion on Crane Lane in Middle River.

Related: Two charged with the murder of Gerald Champ

According to charging documents, they broke into the house, confronted a woman with a knife and stole over a thousand dollars in cash and her rental car---an Infiniti QX80 valued at more than $40,000.

That victim had previously let Moreno stay at her house for a few days claiming he was homeless, and he was upset when she told him he’d have to move on.

“Well, it is 2022. You never know what’s going on, you know?” said Deandre Matthews, who lives in the complex. “People are just doing this to survive.”

When Champ’s family learned the suspects had allegedly terrorized a woman in Baltimore County, they drove there to search the area for their father’s missing vehicle.

They found it two miles away in the Preserve at Windlass Run subdivision, and police later discovered Champ’s blood on the passenger seat.