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The boyfriend of Anitra Gunn, a Georgia college student whose body was found four days after she vanished on Valentine’s Day, has now been charged with her murder.
While the exact manner of death has not yet been determined, it's been ruled a homicide, according to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation.
Officials announced Friday that DeMarcus Little, 22, will be charged with malice murder. He will be officially arraigned Monday afternoon, according to the Fort Valley Department of Public Safety.
“During the investigation, enough information was developed that gave us probable cause to obtain an arrest warrant charging DeMarcus Little with malice murder,” GBI Assistant Special Agent in Charge Todd Crosby said Friday at a news conference.
A representative for the GBI told Oxygen.com that they can not release further information, citing the ongoing investigation.
The announcement of the murder charge came just hours after Little was arraigned on less heinous, yet still troubling charges. He was initially arrested, following the discovery of Gunn's body, and charged with criminal damage to property for an Feb. 5 incident involving Gunn, the department of public health stated.
In a Fort Valley Police Department incident report from Feb. 5, obtained by Oxygen.com, Gunn told police that she woke up to discover that one of her home's windows had been smashed in with a brick. Her tires had also been slashed with an unknown object. A warrant, obtained by Oxygen.com, accuses Little of being the culprit.
The incident report shows that the responding officer asked Gunn if she knew who could have done this to her. She told him no.
"Ms. Gunn also stated that she has not had any issues with anyone," the officer wrote.
The officer noted that her tires were also damaged two weeks prior to the Feb. 5 incident. She did not contact police for that incident.
Little's bond for the property damage charge was set at $10,000 Friday, local outlet 13 WMAZ reports.
Little's sister Shaqasha Little told the outlet that her brother is a “caring” person who wouldn’t have damaged Gunn’s property.
His father Andre Little also defended him, telling the Macon Telegraph that "he didn’t do this. He always loved Anitra. [...] I pray that they find the killer."
“My son has never done anything to anyone. I can sympathize with the family…but my son didn’t do this. He was raised the right way,” the father told 13 WMAZ.
DeMarcus has been stationed as a soldier at Fort Gordon in Georgia, according to the Augusta Chronicle. He was reportedly staying at his aunt’s home outside Fort Valley when Gunn vanished. Gunn was last seen alive at that home on Valentine’s Day morning. Her car was discovered the next day with its bumper ripped off. That bumper was later found near her body.
While Peach County Sheriff Terry Deese has referred to Little as Gunn’s boyfriend, he told reporters previously that he wasn't sure if he was a current or former boyfriend.
Gunn was a senior at Fort Valley State University, majoring in agriculture. She would have graduated this year. Family was always a priority for her, her father Christopher Gunn, told local outlet WGXA. She also worked a lunch shift at Eighteen36 Restaurant and Lounge.
Balloons were released in front of that restaurant Thursday as friends and coworkers remembered the slain student as kind and thoughtful, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
"She was our sister, she was our teammate,” her former boss Kelvin Blalock said. “We loved her dearly.”
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