Yesterday Sherry West, a Georgia mother, witnessed the shooting and killing of her baby. Last night, two teenagers were arrested in connection with that killing. Seventeen-year-old De'Marquis Elkins is charged with first-degree murder. He will be tried as an adult. An un-named fourteen-year-old boy will also be tried for first-degree murder.
Police searched school records and canvassed the neighborhood, following leads that finally brought them to these arrests. Sherry says she's relieved that the alleged perpetrators were found, but the arrests can't bring her peace. "I feel glad that justice will be served," she says. "It's not something I'm going to live with very well. I'm just glad they caught him."
This is the second child Sherry has lost. Her eighteen-year-old son was killed in a fight in 2008. I can't imagine the pain she must be feeling now. She will never know what her baby's first word would have been. Life has been incredibly cruel to her.
Meanwhile, there are the two boys who allegedly killed a baby in a stroller. Elkins' older sister, Sabrina, believes he is innocent. "He couldn't have done that to a little baby. My brother has a good heart." Sherry identified Elkins from a set of photographs police showed her. However, she says the other accomplice seemed younger than 14. She guessed his age as 10. We'll have to wait and see if the evidence supports the charges against the arrested teenagers.
Regardless, someone killed that baby. How much in a kid's life has to go wrong for him to end up doing that? And why do such troubled kids have access to a gun? The community must be doing some soul-searching now as they grapple with this tragedy.
What do you think would lead two teenagers to kill a baby?
Image via Glynn County Detention Center