Photo by Kathy Jefcoats
Clayton County police Officer Travis Nguyen testifies in Clayton Magistrate Court Thursday afternoon. He was one of the officers responding to a burglary in progress June 17 on Bonanza Church Road south of Jonesboro. One of the suspects, a 13-year-old, was shot and killed after reportedly pointing a BB gun at officers.
JONESBORO — A Jonesboro man reportedly caught burglarizing a house with three others, including a 13-year-old shot and killed by Clayton County police officers, could face murder charges in the death, the Clayton News Daily has learned.
Clayton Juvenile Court officials also released information about the teen’s criminal history through an open records request made by the Clayton News Daily.
Jamar Ladann Odom, 19, was in Clayton Magistrate Court Thursday afternoon for a preliminary hearing on burglary and obstruction of an officer charges. After hearing testimony from a Clayton police officer and argument from prosecution and defense attorneys, Magistrate Monica Ewing ordered the charges bound over for possible grand jury indictment.
Police said Odom was with Trevion Davis, 13, and two others June 27 burglarizing a home on Bonanza Church Road south of Jonesboro. When officers arrived, the four bailed out of the house, running in different directions, said police. Davis allegedly brandished a BB gun and refused to stop when ordered to by officers. At least one of the officers fired at Davis, killing him.
The shooting was the third involving a Clayton police officer in 11 days and is being investigated by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation.
Defense attorney Charles Vrono’s cross-examination Thursday of Officer Travis Nguyen glided from eliciting details about the burglary call to questions about Davis’ shooting. When Clayton Assistant District Attorney Tiffany Boulware objected, Vrono told Ewing there is a chance his client could be charged with murder.
Georgia state law allows a charge of felony murder to be imposed on a defendant involved in a crime that ends in death, even if he is not the triggerman. Boulware said the decision to charge Odom with murder has not been made.
“The district attorney is uncertain at this point,” said Boulware. “We’re waiting on the results of the GBI investigation. If the charge is going to be filed, it will be at the indictment level.”
District Attorney Tracy Graham Lawson didn’t attend the hearing. However, she said Thursday she is still waiting on the results of the GBI investigation.
“It’s gonna be a while and I will have no comments on the case until I know the findings,” said Lawson. “The GBI is very thorough. The Johnathan Bun case took a few months. I don’t anticipate anything until fall.”
Bun was convicted in May of shooting to death Clayton sheriff’s Deputy Rick Daly, 55, in July 2011.
Davis was no stranger to Clayton Juvenile Court officials. Records show he was put on probation at the age of 11 for two years in Coweta County for simple battery at school. When his family moved to Clayton County, the probation was transferred, too. Records show Davis stayed out of trouble while on probation. Juvenile Court Judge Steve Teske said Davis had a probation officer who made sure the youngster stayed busy, getting him involved in boxing and basketball.
However, probation ended in March. Shortly before Davis was killed, Clayton juvenile authorities started investigating a complaint filed against Davis for criminal trespass. Records show the accusation could have risen to the level of attempted burglary because Davis was caught in the act of kicking in the door of a home he planned to burglarize, according to court records.
Details about Davis’ possible mental health issues or specialized schooling are protected by federal law and were not released.
A wake for Davis is planned Friday from 7 p.m. until 8 p.m. at Trimble Funeral Home in Decatur, with services to follow Saturday at 1 p.m. His mother, Lakisha Davis, has set up a fund to raise money for her son’s final expenses. In a Facebook posting, Lakisha Davis announced the account at Capitol City Bank.
“Please, to all who loved my son, this is a celebration of his life, and if you knew him you know he would always have something funny to say and he wouldn’t want this to be a sad day,” Lakisha Davis said in her posting.
The account number is 5132881 and donations should be made to Trevion Davis Memorial Fund.