After deliberating for nearly two hours, a Georgia jury found 18-year-old De’Marquise Elkins guilty Friday of multiple charges, including felony murder, for shooting and killing 13-month-old Antonio Santiago during a robbery.
Elkins was also convicted of aggravated assault and other charges for shooting pastor Wilfredo Calix-Flores during a separate mugging 10 days before baby Santiago was shot.
His mother Karimah Elkins, who was tried along with her son, was convicted of tampering with evidence for her role in trying to cover up the shooting.
Both Elkins and his mother showed no sign of any emotion as the verdict was read. They sat silently, staring straight ahead as they have throughout the entire trial.
Elkins could be sentenced to life in prison for his convictions. He was spared from the death penalty, because he was 17 when he shot the baby. A Georgia law prohibits anyone who is under 18 years old during the commission of a crime from being executed. His mother could be sentenced to up to 10 years in prison for her conviction.
Sherry West, Santiago’s mother, wept on the stand during the trial as she recounted how Elkins shot her son in broad daylight in Brunswick, Georgia, on March 21, after he and another teen tried to mug her.
“I told him I have a baby and I have expenses and I didn’t have it. He asked me if I wanted him to shoot my baby. I told him, ‘Please don’t shoot my baby.’ He shot a warning shot into the ground,” West said, weeping. “I asked him, ‘Why are you doing this? Please don’t do this.’ It felt like he shot me in the ear. Then he shot me in the leg. My left leg.”