State News

July 3, 2013

Mom of Ga. baby killing suspect wants own trial

BRUNSWICK — A woman charged with evidence tampering in connection with the March slaying of a Brunswick baby has asked a judge to try her separately from her son, a teenager charged with shooting the child in the face.

Police say Karimah Elkins and her daughter tried to dispose of the gun used in the killing by dumping it in a pond, where investigators later found the weapon. Her attorney filed a motion in Glynn County Superior Court that argues prosecutors want to “muddy the waters” by trying the suspect charged with pulling the trigger alongside family members charged with trying to shield him from investigators.

Attorney Wrix McIlvane wrote that “the jury will have insurmountable difficulty in distinguishing the alleged acts” of the different defendants in the case, The Brunswick News ( ) reported.

Police say De’Marquise Elkins shot 13-month-old Antonio Santiago in the face as he sat in his stroller. They say the 18-year-old suspect killed the child and shot his mother, Sherry West, in the leg after she refused to give him money in an attempted street robbery. Another teenager, 15-year-old Dominique Lang, has also been charged with murder as an accomplice.

De’Marquise Elkins’ mother and his sister, Sabrina Elkins, are charged with trying to get rid of the .22-caliber revolver used in the killing. His aunt, Katrina Elkins, is charged along with his mother with giving police a false alibi for the teenager.

Because of pretrial publicity in the case, Superior Court Judge Stephen Kelley has moved De’Marquise Elkins’ trial nearly 330 miles away to Marietta in metro Atlanta. The trial is scheduled to begin Aug. 19.

All five defendants were indicted together and each of them except for De’Marquise Elkins has asked for a separate trial. The judge hasn’t ruled on any of the requests and has set aside Aug. 1 to hear arguments from attorneys.

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