The mother of a six-month-old boy who was was caught in crossfire between two drivers and killed in his car seat on Monday says she knew her son was dead when she pressed him against her white sweater, which is still stained with his blood.
Kerri Gray opened the back door and saw her baby slumped over in his seat as they were on their way to an Atlanta store. She noticed a pool of blood in his lap and her heart began to race, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
‘I pulled him out of the car seat and I grabbed him, and when I did that, that’s when I felt the pieces – the loose pieces in the back of his head,’ Gray told the newspaper while holding back tears.
Authorities have since arrested 22-year-old Dequasie Jonathan Little, who they believe is the shooter. He has a rap sheet dating back to 2019 that includes charges of child cruelty. He is now charged with felony murder and aggravated assault.
‘I think that if you get the opportunity, make better life choices, because those of us who become your collateral damage – that’s not fair,’ Gray said of Little’s arrest. ‘You ruined my life.’
Kerri Gray turned around and saw her baby slumped over in his seat as they were on their way to an Atlanta food store Monday afternoon
Grays says she felt ‘loose pieces’ in the back of her son Grayson Matthew Fleming-Gray’s head. Police say he was caught in crossfire between two other cars
Police arrested Dequasie Jonathan Little in Decatur, Georgia a day later. Little has a rap sheet dating back to 2019 that includes charges of child cruelty
Gray told the Journal-Constitution that she still got up to make her baby’s bottle Tuesday morning.
‘That was the worst feeling in the world because he was already a miracle baby,’ Gray said. ‘That was the baby that I dreamt of having my whole life. And the fact that somebody could so selfishly take him away.’
The fatal shooting six-month-old Grayson Matthew Fleming-Gray happened Monday shortly before 3pm near the Food Mart on Anderson Avenue, where Gray often shopped with her son.
‘I know I heard a noise, I pulled off to the side, I saw two cars speed past me and when I pulled in, that’s when I had seen the gun barrel and next thing I know I get out to check on my son, and he was slumped forward,’ Gray told WAGA.
‘The bullet had gone through the trunk and through his eye and up his back,’ she told WGCL.
‘It hit the trunk, so there was no shattered glass, there was no crying, it was instant,’ she said. ‘So, we didn’t feel anything, hear anything.’
Gray told the Atlanta Journal Constitution that she still got up to make her baby’s bottle Tuesday morning, after he was shot dead in his car seat on Monday
‘It hit the trunk, so there was no shattered glass, there was no crying, it was instant. So, we didn’t feel anything, hear anything,’ Gray said. Above, she holds her son’s teddy bear
Police released surveillance video of the shooting. They said community tips helped locate Little
The shooting happened Monday shortly before 3pm near the Food Mart on Anderson Avenue
On Tuesday, Atlanta Mayor Andre Dickens announced the arrest of 22-year-old Dequasie Jonathan Little, a day after Grayson’s death.
Little waived his first hearing Wednesday. He will remain in the Fulton County jail without bond.
‘I won’t cheerlead the fact that we were able to apprehend this person in such a short period of time,’ Atlanta police Chief Rodney Bryant said Tuesday. ‘I’m mad as hell that the incident occurred in the first place.’
Little was recently released from Houston County jail after his probation on misdemeanor charges battery and child cruelty was revoked in November
‘It is such a tragedy when we lose any citizen of this city,’ the chief added. ‘But when it’s a child, it pulls even more at the heartstrings, not just of the men and women of the Atlanta Police Department, but throughout the community.’
Tips from the community helped authorities find Little in Decatur, a city directly northeast of Atlanta.
Little was recently released from Houston County jail after his probation on misdemeanor charges battery and child cruelty was revoked in November, WAGA reports.
He was also on probation on aggravated assault charges in Fulton County from 2019. Court records show he got five years probation on those charges after pleading guilty under a first offense status.
Little is also out on bond for a misdemeanor charge in Clayton County where he was charged with two counts of giving false information.
Grayson’s death was the 12th homicide of the year in Atlanta and the second deadly shooting of the year involving babies, AJC reports.
Earlier this month, a British scientist visiting his girlfriend Katherine Shepard in Atlanta was shot dead in their bed by a stray bullet.
Astrophysicist Matthew Willson, 31, had been in the US barely two days when, on Sunday January 16, he was hit in the head by a round fired amid a ‘rapid’ and ‘reckless’ volley believed to have come from an apartment complex less than 200 feet away.
Matthew Willson, 31, an astrophysicist from Surrey, England, had just arrived in Atlanta to stay with girlfriend Katherine Shepard (right) when he was shot in the head by a stray bullet on January 16
The couple were in bed in Shepard’s apartment unit on Clairmont Rd in Brookhaven when they were awoken at 2am by gunfire
Willson was hit in the head by a round fired amid a ‘rapid’ and ‘reckless’ volley believed to have come from an apartment complex less than 200 feet away
The hole where the bullet pierced the apartment’s exterior wall looks almost innocuous.
From there, it exploded through the dry wall, leaving scorch marks and blowing plaster dust into the back of the next thing it hit – the headboard of the bed that stood directly in front of that wall and the window.
As the bullet exited the headboard, leaving no more than a tuft of disturbed fabric, Willson pulled himself up from where he lay and turned towards his girlfriend who looked out the window. And in that instant, he was hit.
Today a cushion bearing the word, ‘Laugh,’ and a plush blanket cover the stains where Willson’s blood seeped into the now bare mattress.
Shepard’s roommate Aman Kar, 25, placed them there to diminish the horror of the scene.
Shepard had not returned to the room since her boyfriend of three years met his violent death last week.