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Two charged in shooting of child

Two people have been arrested in connection to a 3-year-old being shot at a Lithia Springs motel over the weekend.

Devante Porter, 23, of Atlanta, and his friend, Jermecia Martin, 29, were arrested on several charges including aggravated assault and tampering with evidence in the shooting of Porter’s son, Amir, Saturday morning.

Martin is not related to the child.

The 3-year-old is in critical but stable condition at Scottish Rite Hospital.

Porter and Martin were both denied bond by Chief Magistrate Judge Susan Camp at a hearing on Monday morning.

They appeared before Camp via video from the jail.

During his testimony Monday, DPD Det. Marcel Brown said both Porter and Martin changed their stories several times about what happened at the Intown Suites.

Emergency Medical Services (EMS) was called to the motel around 9:30 a.m. about an injured child, according to Brown.

After arriving at the motel, EMS became suspicious about the couple’s story that the 3-year-old fell out of the bed.

Brown said he observed blood on the bed, pillow and wall of the room.

He also said there were blood spots on the carpet and a bullet hole in the ceiling.

Brown said Porter admitted to owning a gun, but said he did not have it with him at the motel.

Porter and Brown are charged with tampering with evidence after allegedly removing the bullet shell casing and the gun from the room.

They both confirmed that a guest was in the room overnight as the three drank and smoked marijuana.

Brown said he was told the youngster woke up early Saturday morning and wanted something to eat.

Brown said Martin sent Porter to get some food at a wing spot in the Thornton Road area at 10 a.m. Brown said the wing place didn’t open until 11 a.m. that morning.

Before rendering her decision on setting bond, Camp asked both defendants if they wanted to speak.

“He’s not telling the whole story,” Martin said in reference to Brown.

“He didn’t give the full details,” said Porter as he walked away from the video screen.

Porter started cursing and shouting that the full story was not being told.

Deputies instructed Brown to return to the video recorder to hear Camp’s decision.

Both Porter and Martin have unrelated charges in other metro counties. Martin was charged with simple battery in 2012 in Fulton County, but no decision has been made on that case.

Porter was out on bond from a 2020 armed robbery and carjacking charge in Cobb County.

“I’m denying bond because I feel you will commit another felony,” Camp told both defendants.

The youngster’s cousin, Cherlonda Freeman, has set up a GoFundme at to assist the mother with medical expenses. She said her cousin is a single mother that works the overnight shift at a Pepsi plant.

The cousin said the mother is the single provider for the youngster, who goes by the nickname ‘Wuga’.

“Monies will be used to keep this young single mother from having to worry about finances at this current moment,” Freeman wrote on the ‘Amir’s Recovery, Medical & Financial Expenses’ page. “We want all of her focus to solely be on the heading and recovery of her only child, Amir.”

Douglasville Police collecting items for Griffin tornado victims

The Douglasville Police Department is collecting items to assist Spalding County victims who suffered losses due to tornado damage two weeks ago.

Police Chief Gary Sparks is hoping Douglasville and Douglas County citizens will rally around the effort for those displaced from the storm.

“This has been on my heart to help the people in Griffin,” Sparks said. “We want the folks of Douglasville and Douglas County to pray and support those in need. Each city in Georgia should be about helping each other in a time of need.”

Boxes have been set up in the lobby at police headquarters at 2083 Fairburn Road.

Maj. Brad Stafford said Griffin officials have asked for specific items. Those items include new blankets, pet food, large plastic lawn bags, toiletry items, medical supplies, non-perishable canned goods, diapers/wipes, baby food/formula, flashlights, batteries, tarps and can openers.

Sparks said they are also collecting gift cards to stores such as Walmart and Target. If a citizen brings a gift card, they should give it to the receptionist in the lobby.

He said several people have donated gift cards.

“We are hoping for a good showing to take to Griffin,” Sparks said. “We have put out the call.”

Stafford said they are cutting off donations for items Wednesday at noon because Griffin officials said the need will likely change as they get further into the recovery effort.

He said a truck from DPD will drop the items at a distribution center in Spalding County Wednesday evening.

“We will find out if their needs will change as time goes on,” Stafford said.

Sparks said the goodwill could come back to the city and county if they ever need help.

“We may need some assistance in the future,” Sparks said. “We are putting the call out there for our citizens to step up.”

Segal announces candidacy for Douglasville mayor
  • Updated

Former Douglasville City Councilman and Mayor Pro Tem Richard Segal has announced his candidacy for mayor of Douglasville.

Segal was elected to the council in 2015 and served a four-year term as the representative from Ward 5, which covers the east side of the city. He did not seek reelection in 2019.

Segal is the first announced challenger to two-term incumbent Mayor Rochelle Robinson, who defeated incumbent Harvey Persons eight years ago and ran unopposed in her 2019 reelection bid.

“I didn’t seek reelection when I completed my term on the city council because I had completed all the goals I had set for my time in office,” Segal said. “Now I have new goals.”

These goals are centered around our city employees, law enforcement and economic development, Segal said.

Segal is a 23-year resident and homeowner in the city of Douglasville and is a long-time advocate for citizen involvement in local governments and for government transparency, and has encouraged people to “Get informed and Get involved.”

Segal has earned both a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration/Accounting and Master of Business Administration (MBA) and has over 35 years of accounting and finance work experience in the tourism/entertainment, financial services/real estate, consumer products and local/state government sectors.

Segal has also completed the Regional Economic & Leadership Development Program through the Georgia Academy for Economic Development, and received the Economic Development Finance Professional certification from the National Development Council.

Segal also is an alumnus of the Douglasville Police Department’s Citizen Law Enforcement Academy.

“This combination of education and work experience makes me uniquely qualified to lead the city of Douglasville as mayor,” Segal said.

Segal currently serves on the board of directors of the Douglasville-Douglas County Water and Sewer Authority, and previously served on the board of directors of Beyond the Front Porch, Inc., a Douglas County-based nonprofit.

Segal has received recognitions for his support of the programs from both the Douglasville Police Department and the Cultural Arts Council of Douglasville/Douglas County, and at his last meeting as a member of the Douglasville City Council, Segal was presented with a key to the city.

Richard and Rachel Segal are celebrating their 24th wedding anniversary this year, and have one son, Ryan.

In addition to mayor, the Ward 2, Post 2 seat held by Councilman Mark Adams, the Ward 4 seat held by Councilman Chris Watts and the Ward 5 seat held by Councilman Howard Estes — who won Segal’s old seat in 2019 — are on the ballot later this year.

The mayor and city council seats are nonpartisan in Douglasville.

Election day is on Tuesday, Nov. 7.

More information about Segal’s candidacy for mayor can be found at and

Driver killed in two-car accident

One person was killed in a two-vehicle accident early Monday morning in Douglasville.

The accident happened around 6:30 a.m. on Interstate 20 westbound at the Prestley Mill Road overpass, according to Douglasville Police Maj. Brad Stafford.

Stafford said the preliminary indication is that the crash was a rear-end collision. The driver of the car that was rear-ended died, and the driver of the other car sustained minor injuries, Stafford said.

Stafford said a report from the traffic reconstruction team confirming how the accident happened and the speed involved had not been finalized as of Monday afternoon.

The westbound side of I-20- was shutdown for about two-and-a-half hours during Monday’s rush hour commute.

The name of the victim was not released pending notification of next-of-kin.

“We will get more information once we get the report back,” Stafford said.