Teenager Drake Campbell and Jacob Mouzon sat in the courtroom being charged with attempted murder, murder, burglary, and armed robbery. They were waiting to hear the judge’s verdict on whether they could be granted bail or not. When the judge announced his decision, the two burst into tears.
Murder and Home Invasion
Drake and Jacob were part of a five-person group accused of murder and home invasion in South Carolina. Drake’s older brother, Kenneth who had plead guilty to manslaughter just a year ago, was also part of the group.
Tears from a Mother
Jacob’s mother begged for mercy from the judge. She didn’t know what she would do without her son if he went to jail. She claimed that he was a “good kid” and din’t mean for whatever happened to happen.
The Boys’ Character
Drake’s family also pleaded with the judge. The families kept saying the boys were good kids and wouldn’t do anything like this again.
The prosecutors argued that the boys should be denied bond “due to the violent nature of the crime … and also the fact it took four law enforcement two days to apprehend the offenders.” They were afraid the boys would run off if released.
While Drake and Jacob tried to look calm and put together, tears dripped down their faces as they stood before the judge.
Since the boys were charged with murder, the judge couldn’t grant or deny bail even if he wanted to. They would have to go to a circuit judge and argue their case.
Since it took the police so long to find the boys, the lawyers were concerned they would run away if granted bail. They were also considered dangerous.
The home invasion turned into an execution-style murder of Kadeem Johnson and his girlfriend. When the victims came home, they saw the five boys in their house.
Forced by Gunpoint
The boys held the victims at gunpoint as they ransacked the house and stole almost $3,000 cash. They could have simply stolen the items and run, but things turned violent.
The boys had used duct tape to bound Kadeem. He kneeled on the floor, helpless. He couldn’t even beg the boys to spare his life before they suddenly shot him in the head.
Having already killed Kadeem, the boys knew they couldn’t leave any witnesses. So, they brutally shot Kadeem’s girlfriend in the chest and hands and left her to die.
The boys stole two vehicles to get away from the scene. They all kept thinking about what had just happened and tried to plan what to do next.
Fleeing to the Woods
The boys fled into the woods after getting as far away from the house as possible. They thought this would be the safest place to hide out until they figured out what to do next.
Calling in the Dogs
The police used dogs to sniff out the woods after receiving a tip from a resident that they had seen Jacob and Drake. In just hours, the boys had been located and arrested.
Two Days in the Woods
Drake and Jacob lived in the woods for two days before the police caught them. “They were exhausted, did not put up a fight… we brought EMS in to check them out because of the amount of time they’d been in the woods,” the sheriff explained.
Now that the suspects were apprehended, the biggest question was why they did it. The sheriff hoped to get this answer through interrogations.
The police honed in on the fact that there was $3,000 in the home and stolen by the boys. They theorized that the boys and Kadeem were connected through business dealings.
Miraculously, Kadeem’s girlfriend survived the gunshot wounds. She wasn’t sure if she could identify the suspects, though. Granted, she had gone through a great ordeal.
Asking the Community for Help
With Kadeem’s girlfriend still recovering, the police turned to the local community to answer questions and help confirm these boys had invaded the home and killed Kadeem.
Just two years later, a trial was held and a verdict came in. The judge sentenced Jacob Mouzon to 40 years in prison and Drake Campbell is to spend 20 years in prison. The boys were finally going to pay for their horrific crimes.
Damon Kemp faced a similar situation as Drake and Jacob. He became extremely emotional at his bond hearing when he realized just how serious his crimes were.
“I Killed My Friend”
Police arrested Damon for a home invasion and aggravated robbery. It was when Damon screamed, “I killed my friend,” that officers decided they needed to investigate.
Fifteen hours after picking Damon up, the police went to his apartment. There they saw a bullet hole in the door and a gruesome scene inside.
Trey Ingraham and Jordan Paden
The police had stumbled upon the bodies of Damon’s “friends,” Trey Ingraham and Jordan Paden. While in custody, Damon confessed to killing Trey.
Trey and Jordan had let Damon stay in their apartment for free while attending Bethune-Cookman University. Little did they know that their new roommate would be a murderer.
Damon showed extremely strange behavior while in the courtroom. After the judge denied bail, Damon started screaming and snarling at him.
Damon’s behavior changed completely. He started yelling, “God!” with bulging eyes and showing his teeth.
The Victims’ Families
With the victims’ families in the courtroom, they started yelling at Damon, “Day-Day, why would you do that to Trey? Day-Day, I fed you, Trey fed you! He let you live in his house rent-free, why would you do that to Trey?”
Kemp has never revealed his motive for killing his two friends. Needless to say, his mental state isn’t fully stable. He is still awaiting trail with no bail.
When Dylan Schumaker beat up and killed his girlfriend’s baby he was sentenced to 25 years in prison. Not only was Dylan’s crime extremely violent and heinous, but his reaction during court was just as disturbing.
As the judge read out Dylan’s sentencing to the court, Dylan went ballistic. He started screaming and pleading with the judge saying that he never meant to hurt the baby.
When Dylan was babysitting one day, the baby wouldn’t stop crying. So, Dylan took a pillow, put it to the back of the baby’s head, and started beating it with his fists. This led to baby Austin’s death. “He loved you, he trusted you, and you betrayed him,” the judge said during the sentencing.
While Dylan’s remorse seemed genuine, the judge wasn’t fooled by it. He said that Dylan was “a manipulator and deceiver.” This comes after a recording came out of a phone call between Dylan and his mother where he says, “I’m a 16-year-old blond. Probably all I have to do is cry, and they’re going to feel sorry for me.”
Impacted by the Murder
Dylan hurt more than just baby Austin. He hurt Austin’s mother, grandmother and many more. As many as 13 people appeared in court to let people know just how the murder of Austin affected them.
Dylan’s lawyers tried hard to defend him, but failed miserably. They used the defense that if the girlfriend and her son hadn’t been thrown out of her parent’s house, Austin may still be alive. “This didn’t have to happen. If the Smith family hadn’t thrown Ashlee and her children out they wouldn’t have ended up at Dylan’s home,” his lawyer argued.
Prosecutor Colleen Curtin Gable was quick to fire back after the defense by saying, “To blame anyone other than Dylan for what happened flies in the face of reality.” She wasn’t going to let Dylan off the hook, in fact she was going to push for the harshest sentencing possible after receiving evidence that Dylan had tortured the baby before killing him.
Not His First Crime
This wasn’t Dylan’s first crime. It turns out that Dylan abused the baby many times including slapping him if he spit his food out, shoving his head on the floor, and even punching the baby’s head.
Dylan suffered from extreme anger. His doctors gave him medication to help manage his anger and ADD, but Dylan refused to take the pills. Dylan’s lawyer, while recognizing that Dylan did kill the baby, pushed for a lesser sentence.
Never Meant to Hurt Anyone
The judge asked Dylan why he killed the baby. Dylan replied, “I never wanted to hurt Austin. I never wanted Austin to die. I don’t know why I didn’t go for help.”
Pleading for Forgiveness
Dylan, while in court, pleaded with his girlfriend to forgive him. “Ashlee, I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to hurt him. You know I loved Austin,” he said. However, the judge saw right through his tears and gave him the harshest sentence in the book for a child murderer.