BRUNSWICK, Ga. — A Glynn County grand jury has indicted De’Marquise Kareem Elkins, 17, and Dominique Demetrius Lang, 14, on murder and other charges in the March 21 death of a 13-month-old boy. It also indicted Elkins’ mother and sister with tampering with evidence in throwing the pistol that was used to shoot the child and his mother in a pond.
Elkins is also accused of shooting a man in a March 11 robbery attempt, and his mother and another aunt are charged with making false statements to police.
The indictment Wednesday said a .22 caliber revolver was used to shoot toddler Antonio Angel Santiago, his mother Sherry West, who was wounded in the right thigh, and the March 11 victim.
Elkins alone is charged with malice murder but both he and Lang are charged with two counts of felony murder in that the baby was killed during the commission of aggravated assault and attempted robbery, the indictment says.
The indictment charges each of them with three counts of aggravated assault in shooting West and her baby and in striking West on the head with the weapon.
They are each charged with the attempted robbery of West and first degree cruelty to children in causing the baby to suffer “cruel and excessive pain” by shooting him in the face.
Elkins’ mother, Karimah Elkins, and aunt, Kartina Elkins, were charged with making false statements to police. The indictment says that while speaking to police on March 22, Katrina Elkins provided a false alibi for Elkins by reporting he was at her residence during the shooting. On the same day, the indictment says, Karimah Elkins also provided a false alibi for her son by telling police he was with her during shooting.
Karimah Elkins and her daughter Sabrina Elkins are charged with tampering with evidence by throwing the revolver used in the shooting into a saltwater pond.
The mother also is charged with possession of a handgun by a felon. She pleaded guilty in 2010 to a felony shoplifting charge for which she was given credit for four months served in jail, sentenced to eight years probation and ordered to pay a $500 fine.
Karimah and Katrina Elkins were arrested Tuesday and posted the $1,000 bail. Karimah Elkins was released, but her sister was held for violating her probation on a misdemeanor in Henry County.
The Glynn County Sheriff’s Office said Sabrina and Karimah Elkins had not been booked on the new charges.
The last two counts of the 15-count indictment charges De’Marquise Elkins with criminal attempt to commit armed and aggravated assault.
The indictment says that on March 11, Elkins pointed a gun at Wilfredo Calix-Flores and demanded his wallet and cell phone and then shot him in the arm with a .22-caliber revolver.
Glynn County police found a handgun in the pond east of U.S. 17 just north of its intersection with Spur 25. County Police Chief Matt Doering refused Wednesday to divulge any information about the weapon other than the Georgia Bureau of Investigation has it and will do the appropriate analysis.
Doering said West was never a suspect in her child’s slaying nor was the boy’s father, Louis Santiago, who lives across Union Street from West.
“We believe the location and the victim were both random,’’ Doering said.
He also said that officers executed more search warrants Tuesday, found more physical evidence and identified additional witnesses. He would not comment on any of those.
District Attorney Jackie Johnson has not made any statements about the crime, but she sent out a printed release saying the law does not allow the death penalty against the two defendants because they are both younger than 18.
Johnson thanked all the law enforcement officers who “have worked tirelessly to gather evidence in this case.”
Doering said it was a tip from someone who saw a vehicle leaving the vicinity of the shooting with someone crouched in back that led officers to arrest the two teens. Doering said the officers identified Lang as a suspect and, through interviews with him, De’Marquise Elkins.
There was also a warning in Johnson’s release.
“It is a felony to intimidate, threaten, or otherwise attempt to improperly influence a witness,” the release said, and also a felony to delay or prevent anyone else from reporting a crime to law enforcement officers.