CLAYTON COUNTY, Ga. - A DeKalb County teacher has been arrested in connection with a 2016 gang-related home invasion that left two children dead.
It happened in October 2016. Police told FOX 5 News they received a 911 call from a home on Libby Lane in Clayton County, as a child in the home called authorities to report someone entered and fired shots.
Responding officers found Daveon Coates, 15, and his sister, Tatiyana Coates, 11, dead from apparent gunshot wounds. Clayton County Police said the teens were among six children home alone when the invasion occurred.
Clayton County Police Chief Michael Register said the murders were gang-related and a retaliatory move from a gang in the metro area; however, Daveon and Tatiyana weren't the intended targets. Investigators said the gang members were actually after another 15-year-old; police said the unnamed teen had moved into the victims' house from Tennessee with his mother and his siblings.
"We are still investigating his gang affiliations, but he is clearly associated with the men who were there that night and we know the shooting was gang-related. We are still working some very strong leads and we are committed to bringing justice to those two innocent children," said Clayton County Police Major Tina Daniel.
This week, authorities announced several arrests have been made in the case. That includes fifth-grade teacher Michael De'Sean White, who was taken into custody at Toney Elementary School on Friday.
"He was hiding in plain sight. It's just unimaginable that someone who is entrusted to help mold children's futures would be tied to something like this. But we have witnesses who put him there. And it was those witnesses who helped the GBI put together the composite sketch. That's sketch is what helped lead us to him," said Major Daniel.
DeKalb County Schools released the following statement after White's arrest:
On March 23, 2018, DeKalb County School District (DCSD) was made aware that an employee at Toney Elementary School was arrested and charged with a crime. The district is fully cooperating with law enforcement agencies in DeKalb and Clayton counties in a combined investigation. Per standard procedure, the employee was removed from his/her position until official results of an investigation are released. DeKalb County School District's first priority is the safety of our students and staff. All employees must submit to a thorough background check with DCSD's Public Safety division before being hired in any capacity. This specific employee was checked twice in 2017; and on both occasions, nothing indicated this employee may be involved in criminal behavior."
White has been charged with malice murder.