GUILTY GA - Timothy Johnson, 7, dead after home invasion, DeKalb County, 16 Sept 2007

Discussion in 'Recently Sentenced and Beyond' started by misterallgood, Sep 17, 2007.

  1. misterallgood

    misterallgood Former Member

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    http://tinyurl.com/32pozm

    Just before midnight on Sunday night, someone entered a home on Toney Drive in South DeKalb County, GA. In a bedroom on the upper floor of the house the killer opened fire on a 15-year-old girl and her 7-year-old brother.

    The girl is in the hospital this morning, fighting for her life. The boy is dead.

    Five other people, including two other kids, were asleep elsewhere in the house, but they were not harmed.

    Apparently no one saw the attacker, and the gunfire was what woke the rest of the residents.

    No one saw the killer leave.

    At this time DeKalb police have no suspects and no motive for the assault.

    I was struck by several aspects of this story when I heard it on the local news this morning (I live in North Fulton County, GA, also in the Atlanta Metro) --

    * Only the teen girl and her brother -- who happened to be in the same room -- were targeted. FIVE other people were unharmed, AND they didn't see the killer leave?

    * Crimes like this so often seem either/or propositions -- either the whole family is killed, or there is only one victim and the perpetrator is often quickly arrested. It's weird that more than 8 hours into the investigation DeKalb police still have no suspects or motive. It is weird that just two young people were targeted.

    * This happened in Decatur. While there are plenty of parts of DeKalb that aren't nice, Decatur is a decent area. I'm not sure if this was in the more gentrified part of Decatur, though.

    * There was another shooting very early this morning in Dekalb County. It also took place in a suburban area. Still don't know if it was connected. Sadly, shootings in DeKalb and in South Fulton aren't all that uncommon.

    FWIW, I don't think the 7-year-old was an intended target. I'd bet police are examining the teen girl's circle of friends pretty closely at the moment.

    Steve/Mr. A
     
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  3. JanetElaine

    JanetElaine Well-Known Member

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    My heart still is in that area. This is so sad, those poor kids.

    What stood out to me is the shooter went to an upstairs bedroom to shoot these kids. The others were all in downstairs bedrooms, with much easier access. Makes me think the 15 year old was targeted (I can't imagine the 7 year old being the target either).
    The shooter must have known where he was going, or he would have woken the others up most likely, plus he knew to go upstairs. My conclusion: he knew the house and he knew the girl.
    I really hope they're looking at her social circle pretty closely... shouldn't be too hard to catch the shooter from there, IMHO.
     
  4. angelmom

    angelmom The love stays...forever in our hearts

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    misterallgood...thanks for posting this story. Didn't realize you are a neighbor (I am in John's Creek).

    On the radio this morning they are saying that they do believe the children were the target. Still no suspects.

    Why would someone target a child like this???

    Why would a 15yo girl and a 7yo boy be sleeping in the same room...maybe she knew something was wrong and she was trying to protect him.

    Did he recently witness a crime? Is he caught in the middle of a divorce case or some other legal problem and someone was afraid he might tell something? I just cannot fathom why someone would target such a young child. It breaks my heart. I pray for the family and for LE that they find the person responsible.
     
  5. JanetElaine

    JanetElaine Well-Known Member

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    That's what I thought too... for both of them really. I guess I just don't want to think about a 7 year old being the target. :(
     
  6. misterallgood

    misterallgood Former Member

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    The little boy being a target would make me think a couple of things:

    -- an adult accused of molestation attempting to eliminate a witness/alleged victim

    -- a parent, either accused of abuse or in the midst of some kind of terrible custody battle.

    News reports here indicated the grandparents and mother were in the home, no mention of a father.

    The teen girl being the target and the brother murdered because he was there could indicate either of the two things above OR a peer with a grudge -- possibly an ex-boyfriend or, who knows, even a stalker.

    angelmom, I've gotten the impression there are quite a few Georgians on this board. I'm a transplant, but I've been here a few years, now. I really like where I live!

    Steve/Mr. A
     
  7. misterallgood

    misterallgood Former Member

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    Just adding some info -- the shooting occurred at 3141 Toney Dr, according to WSB-TV. That part of Dekalb is actually unincorporated, and not technically in Decatur. The address is owned by a Ralph and Carolyn Johnson. They have lived there for quite some time, so I'd imagine they are the grandparents in this case. It's actually a split-level home with 4 bedrooms -- 3 down, one up?
     
  8. JanetElaine

    JanetElaine Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Steve, I was wondering where on Toney it might be. Since it's an awfully long street, and a few houses are a bit further away from their neighbors (important in determining if they could have heard/seen anything).

    From the map, can you (anyone) tell if their home is surrounded closely by the neighbors, or if there are big garages there? I'm not certain about what I'm seeing.

    ETA: I see you added a pic of their house... after looking at that and comparing it to the house on the map, it does look like it aren't garages, but the neighbors' homes are very close. Hopefully they have something to help LE out with....
     
  9. misterallgood

    misterallgood Former Member

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    JanetElaine,

    The house can be seen here. No garage on the house where the shooting occurred, and it appears as though there are trees on the lot. I checked the page info metadata for the photo of the house, and it looks as though it was uploaded just yesterday, the 16th. So the house may have just been listed for sale. Says "seller must sell" and that the home needs some TLC.

    Is any of that relevant to the shootings? I don't know. I have to wonder. Ralph and Carolyn had lived there since 1977, according to property records. They list to sell yesterday and just before midnig

    Here's a more accurate Google Map link.

    Steve/Mr. A
     
  10. JanetElaine

    JanetElaine Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Steve, I saw that in your earlier post (which I didn't see before I posted mine) so that was pretty much cleared up for me.

    Good question. It's not even listed for too much more than the appraised home value ($120,100) and even though I am by far no expert in real estate, usually people ask quite a bit higher than that. If my reasoning here is correct, could that also point to them wanting to sell fast (which would jive with wanting/trying to get away)?

    ETA: well duh.... you'd think 'seller must sell' would give the urgency away a bit.... sorry.
     
  11. sherri79

    sherri79 Former Member

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    if i am reading the google map correctly it would look like someone could enter the property on the east and stay in the trees til they reached the house or the back yard. i also dont see any yards with a fence so it is less likely to have dogs in the area. no dogs and a wooded lot would help explain why nobody noticed any thing in the area.
     
  12. Mygirlsadie

    Mygirlsadie New Member

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    OMG how awful. To me it sounds like the teen girl was protecting her little brother letting him sleep with her. My youngest is 7 and sometimes when he is scared he will go in his teenage sisters room and ask her if he can sleep with her. I wonder if the urgency in selling the house has anything to do with the murder?
     
  13. angelmom

    angelmom The love stays...forever in our hearts

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    I would also be curious to know if the shooting took place in the "possible teen or in-law suite on lower level with private entrance..."

    That might explain why someone was able to enter the home without waking the others in the house.

    If so, who knew the kids slept there?
     
  14. JanetElaine

    JanetElaine Well-Known Member

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    The article Steve posted said the shooter went to an upstairs bedroom.

    The article also mentions it's a two-story home, while the property data lists it as a 1 story. In the pic you can see that it kind of looks split-level on the right hand side.

    I thought the same thing as you did, but I decided to for now believe the article is correct (about the upstairs bedroom).

    Even so though, if it was that room - the shooter had to have known where he was going. Unless he just went into that room and shot whoever was in there, regardless of who they were.

    Which makes it all the more scary, because then it may have been a random burglary gone wrong.
     
  15. angelmom

    angelmom The love stays...forever in our hearts

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    Sorry, I missed that part. That really makes me wonder how everyone else slept through. I'm sure you are right.

    Also, how the shooter knew where to go. If it was random, why not shoot everyone in the home? If it were a burglary, wouldn't the police know b/c of things being stolen?

    I wonder what makes LE believe that the children were the targets. So scary and sad for the neighbors and family members!

    Also, who besides the mom and grandparents were in the house? There were two other people unharmed? Do we know who? Is anyone else at risk? I keep thinking of the sisters who were killed days apart, possibly by the same person. They think the second one may have been killed b/c she was helping LE identify her sister's killer.
     
  16. MagicRose99

    MagicRose99 Watch out for my thorns!

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    According to Steve's first post:

    Five other people, including two other kids, were asleep elsewhere in the house, but they were not harmed.
     
  17. SuziQ

    SuziQ Well-Known Member

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    I doubt the killer went through the whole house looking for his target(s). Who's bedroom was it? Both of theirs? Or was one just crashing in that room with the other just for the night. And happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.
     
  18. SuziQ

    SuziQ Well-Known Member

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    ******

    I'm thinking the same thing as you.
     
  19. TGIRecovered

    TGIRecovered Well-Known Member

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    Sometimes families move to get away from a Child Protective Services investigation. Sadly, moving to a different state seems to be a very effective way of dodging child abuse charges.

    The shooter must have had some reason to believe that he or she would not be confronted by the adults in the home since it seems no effort was made to attack any of them.

    How old are the grandparents?

    Susan
     
  20. TGIRecovered

    TGIRecovered Well-Known Member

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  21. JanetElaine

    JanetElaine Well-Known Member

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    I checked the civil and criminal records of the grandparents in Dekalb county to see if there recently was anything going on with them, but nothing relevant there. Only traffic related records from 1992, '94 and 2002.
    Don't know about the other adult in the house as I don't know her name (yet).
     

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