Collingswood Murder Victim was Robbed, Killed for Marijuana, Police Say


Surveillance footage and witness statements describe a violent robbery in which the Parkview Apartments resident was attacked by men who entered in a side door of the building in which he lived.

By Matt Skoufalos | December 4, 2019

Parkview at Collingswood D Building. Credit: Matt Skoufalos.

As the search for one of his suspected killers continues, the investigation into the death of Collingswood resident Jose Morel suggests that the 26-year-old man was murdered and robbed over a quantity of marijuana.

According to the probable cause statements charging suspects Damian Crews, Dwayne Graves, and Dawud Haskins with the killing, police allege that the three men conspired to rob Morel in his Parkview Apartments home, and killed him in the process.

Officers report having entered Morel’s apartment to discover “a large amount of blood and four spent shell casings on the floor.” They also allegedly recovered “several marijuana buds” around the apartment, as well as materials for packaging and distributing them.

Video surveillance reportedly showed Crews walking to Morel’s apartment at 9:33 p.m., and returning to his own apartment with a large bag of marijuana shortly thereafter. Footage later allegedly showed him exiting D Building terrace door at 9:56 p.m., and entering an arriving vehicle at 9:58 p.m. Less than 10 minutes later, video showed him re-entering the building with Haskins and Graves, police said.

An eyewitness to the incident, who claimed to have been inside the apartment with Morel since 8:30 that evening, alleged that there had also been a large bag of marijuana there, which officers said they did not recover during their search.

That witness, described in the report only as a longtime friend of Morel, said the two were alone in the apartment later that night when two men knocked on the door, and then immediately forced their way in at gunpoint. The witness identified them as Haskins and Graves, and Graves as the man who pointed a gun at Morel’s chin. The witness claimed to have fled the scene via a nearby stairwell during the struggle that followed.

A stairwell at the Parkview at Collingswood apartments was taped off after a homicide there. Credit: Matt Skoufalos.

Surveillance footage at the property allegedly showed the three men entering the D Building, where Morel lived, via the second-floor terrace entrance at 10:06 p.m.

Seven minutes later, after the shooting, footage reportedly showed the same men leaving through the same door, entering a vehicle, and leaving together.

After seeing their images captured in a police information bulletin that circulated in the days after the killing, two of the suspects subsequently contacted police to establish their alibis on the night in question.

Two days after the incident, Crews reached out to detectives to tell them he had been going to the seventh floor of the D Building on the night in question, but instead ran to a relative’s house nearby after hearing gunshots.

Graves did the same thing the next day, adding the detail that the three men hailed a cab outside the building. He also told police that he had cut open his mouth because he slipped and fell while running from the gunshots.

A week after the homicide, investigators interviewed Haskins at the Camden County Prosecutor’s Office (CCPO). Haskins allegedly identified himself in the security footage, in which he was also allegedly seen stuffing a bag of marijuana into his waistband while going to the car.

20-year-old Dwayne Graves of Camden City is wanted for the murder and robbery of Jose Morel. Credit: CCPO.

Crews and Haskins are currently being held at the Camden County Jail, while Graves is allegedly at large.

He is considered armed and dangerous, and anyone who encounters him should call police immediately, the CCPO said.

Anyone with any information about where Graves may be found is asked to call CCPO Det. Matthew Barber (856-225-5166) or Collingswood Police Det. Michael Manning (856-854-1901).

Morel was a beloved figure in the Camden community and a Collingswood High School graduate.

Friends remembered him as a pivotal figure who helped launch the careers of a handful of up-and-coming Camden City musicians.

Anyone charged with a crime is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. An arrest is not a conviction.

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