Irving Man Charged With Murder Of 16-year-old Girl

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September 08, 2012 08:50 PM CDT September 09, 2012 07:27 PM CDT Irving man charged with murder of 16-year-old girl
Irving man charged with murder of 16-year-old girl
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MELISSA REPKO The Dallas Morning News Staff Writer
Published: 08 September 2012 08:50 PM

RelatedAn Irving man is accused of shooting 16-year-old Shania Gray, who had been missing since Thursday, in a secluded park in Irving and leaving her body in a nearby river, Carrollton police say.

Franklin B. Davis, 30, of Irving was charged with capital murder on Sunday, according to Carrollton police. A body was found on Saturday in the inlet of the Trinity River on the border of Irving and Dallas, near Luna Road. It was later identified as Gray.

Gray was last seen at Hebron High School in Carrollton on Thursday around 4 p.m. Police say Davis arranged to meet with Gray after school. They say he drove her to Campion Trails Park and walked with her to a secluded area, where he shot her and left her body in the river.

“It’s our understanding that Shania was killed within the hour when she was picked up from school,” said police spokesman Jon Stovall.

Gray had recently switched schools, from John D. Horn High School in Mesquite to Hebron High School, since her family was planning to move to Carrollton – which was closer to her father’s new workplace.

It was Gray’s second day at her new high school when she went missing, said Sherry Ramsey, who is close friends with Gray’s mother, Sherry Gray-James, and spoke on behalf of the family.

On Thursday afternoon, Gray-James drove to Hebron High School to pick up her daughter, who was being tutored to catch up on the first week of schoolwork. But when she arrived to the school, Gray was not there. She looked around the school, but did not find her daughter.

Instead, police say the teenager was driven away by Davis – a man charged with raping her two years earlier.

The two first met when Gray babysat for Davis’ two children, Ramsey said. Gray’s mother got to know Davis’ wife at massage school. Although Davis and his wife were separated, he would sometimes stop by and visit when Gray was babysitting.

Later, after the teen declined many babysitting requests, Gray told her grandma that Davis had raped her, Ramsey said. Her family reported the rape to Mesquite police and the case is pending in Dallas County. At the time of the sexual assault, Davis threatened her life if Gray told anyone about the rape, Ramsey said.

Davis faces four counts of sexual assault of a child.

“The trial was coming up in October and I think he didn’t want her to testify,” Ramsey said.

Gray’s family did not know of any contact between Davis and Gray since the sexual assault, except immediately prior to her death, Ramsey said.

Her parents say that Davis lured Gray into meeting him by making a fake Facebook profile, with a photo of a young man who looked 17- or 18-years-old and sent her messages, saying that he knew her friends and had a crush on her. He told her he would stop by after school to say hello on Thursday.

“She definitely wouldn’t have talked to him, if she knew who he was,” Ramsey said. “That’s why he went through such schemes on Facebook.”

Ramsey and Gray’s family are not sure what caused Gray to get into the car. Ramsey said she wonders if Davis wore a disguise or held up the 38 caliber pistol that he later used to kill her.

“I can only imagine Shania’s face when she got into the car and recognized his face, the fright she felt,” Ramsey said. “That’s the part that haunts me the most.”

“Shania was very smart, but she was just a teen.”

Carrollton police began investigating after Gray’s family reported her missing on early Friday morning, said Stovall, police spokesman. They talked to Mesquite police, who told them that criminal charges were pending against Davis in Dallas County and Gray was the victim, Stovall said.

GPS tracking also linked Davis to the crime scene. Davis and Gray’s cell phones were both tracked near West Belt Line Road between MacArthur Boulevard and the Trinity River on Thursday afternoon, according to police.

Police issued an alert about the missing teenager shortly after 4 p.m. Saturday, about an hour after Dallas Fire-Rescue had responded to a call about a body, which was later identified as Gray’s.

On Friday, police arrested Davis on unrelated traffic warrants from Fort Worth and Balch Springs and held him in Carrollton. They began interviewing him about possible links to Gray’s death, Stovall said.

Carrollton police say that Davis confessed to killing Gray, after her body was found on Saturday. Police retrieved the weapon, a 38 caliber pistol, from a nearby pond.

Police believe that Davis acted alone, Stovall said. Davis is being held at Dallas County jail.

On Monday, family and friends will gather at John D. Horn High School in Mesquite, Gray’s old school, at 7 p.m. for a candlelight vigil. They will honor the life of a bright and bubbly teen, a straight A student with a beautiful singing voice and a talent for athletics, Ramsey said.

At Horn High School, Gray played on the basketball team and ran track, Ramsey said. Despite her petite, 5’ 2” frame, she was “fast as lightening” and earned more than a dozen medals.

She competed in three Junior Olympic competitions for track and field. At one of them, she met Olympic sprinter Michael Johnson, who autographed her silver and yellow running shoes.

“Her smile would light up a room,” Ramsey said. “She was no perfect child, but she was a great kid.”

I only hope this lil girl gets justice if not by man then by God himself

in nomine patris et filii et spiritus sancti
saintsforever saintsforever
31-35, M
Sep 21, 2012