Murdered Hairstylist Paid Assailant for Drugs, Police Say

Prosecutors are relying on an inmate’s conversation with Christopher Powell, who claimed self-defense in allegedly fatally stabbing Boston hairstylist Corey Thompson and left him for dead underneath the I-93 overpass last February.

According to that inmate, interviewed by police at Nashua Street Jail, Powell, 40, told the inmate that Thompson, 44, had given him $10,000-$13,000 to purchase drugs.

Police found Thompson dead at the corner of Traveler and Albany streets with eight stab wounds to his chest and torso Feb. 25 in the morning, according to the Suffolk County district attorney’s office.

Powell’s DNA was found on a fence at the scene and on Thompson’s car. Surveillance cameras also captured Powell’s image at the scene, the district attorney said. Police reports show that authorities recovered both a Swiss army knife and $19,000 cash at Powell’s residence.

Powell admitted to stabbing Thompson after his arrest, police said.

Powell told officers that Thompson and Thompson’s boyfriend, David Strout, were intoxicated when they approached Powell and his friend, according to a police report. His friend borrowed Thompson’s phone and left the area. Thompson demanded Powell to retrieve the cellphone. Thompson stabbed him during the argument and ordered him to get in Thompson’s car to look for his friend toward the I-93 overpass, Powell said.

Powell said he jumped out of the car at a stoplight while Thompson and his boyfriend were arguing. Thompson caught up with Powell and started beating him while holding him to the ground. Powell told police he took out his small pocket knife and stabbed Thompson to get him off.

Powell, held without bail, is due back in court Feb. 6.

Released by the Suffolk County district attorney’s office on March 27, 2013:

No Bail in South End Man’s Homicide
BOSTON, March 27, 2013 – An Everett man was charged with murder and ordered held without bail in the stabbing death last month of 44-year-old Corey Thompson, Suffolk County District Attorney Daniel F. Conley said today.

CHRISTOPHER W. POWELL (D.O.B. 5/2/73) of Everett was arraigned in Boston Municipal Court this morning in Thompson’s stabbing death in the South End last month. Judge Mark Hart Summerville ordered Powell held without bail at the request of Assistant District Attorney Edmond Zabin, chief of the DA’s Homicide unit.

Zabin told the court that Thompson’s body was discovered under the Interstate 93 overpass at the corner of Albany and Traveler streets on Feb. 25. He had been stabbed approximately eight times, including wounds to the torso and two to the chest. A passerby spotted his remains at about 8:30 that morning and called 911.

The ensuing investigation– led by State Police detectives assigned to the Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office with the assistance of the Crime Scene Services Section and Troop E units – linked Powell to the scene through video surveillance, witness statements, and physical evidence gathered in the days and weeks that followed. Motive in the incident remains under investigation.

After his arrest yesterday, Powell allegedly made post-Miranda statements admitting that he pulled a knife and stabbed Thompson during a physical altercation, prosecutors said.

Powell was represented by Michael Bourbeau. He will return to court on April 23.

A copy of Powell’s indictment has been added below.

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