Family of baby killed in home invasion calls gunman a coward

Warrant issued for woman in connection with DeKalb witness killing

DeKalb police have issued an arrest warrant on murder charges in the killing of a witness to an earlier fatal shooting that police say prompted a retaliatory attack Saturday that left a baby dead, and three women injured.

Kayla Dixon, 20, originally identified as a “person of interest,” is now wanted on murder charges in the death of Alexis Malone, 19, who was a witness to a fatal shooting on May 3, police say.

Police believe the killing of Malone – who was found dead Saturday evening – prompted a retaliatory home invasion and the point-blank shootings that left the 9-month-old baby dead and the three women “critically injured,” DeKalb Public Safety Director Cederic Alexander told The Atlanta Journal Constitution today.

“It is one of the most egregious acts I have ever experienced,” Alexander said. “They (people in the house) ran upstairs with that child and barricaded themselves …. And those guys kicked in that door and shot them at point-blank range.”

Alexander declined to discuss that case further, saying it was still under investigation.

But he said police are still searching for Cutrez Johnson, 16, also known as “Lil Red,” and Oslushla Smith, 19, also known as Budda or Boo, in connection with the May 3 shooting of Michael Phillips, 29, at a party in south DeKalb.

Another man, Kemontay Cullins, 18, was arrested Sunday in connection with the May 3 killing.

Police said Johnson and Smith either lived in the home involved in the Saturday night shooting or “had connections” where the baby lived on To Lani Farm Road.

The neighborhood is off Redan Road in south DeKalb. Police said three or four men with their faces covered with bandannas kicked in the back door of the home on To Lani Farm Road sometime after 10:30 p.m. Saturday.

Three terrified women inside grabbed the baby, ran upstairs and tried to lock themselves into a bathroom, but the gunmen kicked it in and fired at them multiple times. Their names were not released. The women are 36, 23, and 21, police said. The 21-year-old is thought to be the baby’s mother.

Alexander said the home invasion came about five hours after authorities got an anonymous call saying that a woman’s body could be found on Agape Way in DeKalb. That body turned out to be Alexis Malone, 19, who police said witnessed the May 3 killing.

Police said on May 3 they were called to The Mountain Lake apartment complex on North Hairson road, where Phillips had been shot to death in the head.

A 25-year-old Mountain Lake resident told the AJC he ran out of his apartment nearby when he heard gunshots May 3. He said numerous people were in a garden apartment watching the Floyd Mayweather championship fight, drinking and socializing, spilling outside into a grassy area at the corner of the building. The man, whose name the newspaper is withholding for fear of reprisal against him, said some young uninvited guests arrived, leading to a fight, which then got worse because, he said, “everybody had guns.”

He said the gunmen had come at Phillips from two sides and he raised his hands in surrender. That’s when he was shot, Smith said, adding that he is told the shooters were members of the Bloods street gang.

Police will not say if they believe the shootings are gang related.

DeKalb County police spokeswoman Mekka Parish said the crime spree is not related to a drive-by shooting Saturday evening that left two men dead and three other people wounded. That case happened around 7 p.m. on Shamrock Drive, south of Decatur, where a car followed another car and then occupants of the trail vehicle opened fire.

One man and two women were also wounded in that attack. No names have been released in that case.

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