George Coty Wayman has been identified as the man responsible for killing his 3-year-old stepson in a crime that has sent shock waves through a remote area of Clay County, Texas, which is located near the state’s border with Oklahoma. According to a report from Dallas Morning News, Wayman, 18, is now facing capital murder charges after police found evidence supporting their allegation that he fatally shot his 3-year-old stepson in the head when the child wouldn’t abide by his order to stop jumping on the bed.
Texas authorities arrested Wayman on Wednesday night and he was charged in the death of 3-year-old Dominic Tra’Juan Castro.
In a report obtained by the local television station KFDX, authorities received a 911 call saying that a child was shot in the head in a trailer in a rural area of the county. The fatal shooting occurred Tuesday night in a travel trailer in the 4700 block of Buffalo Springs Road, an arrest-warrant affidavit revealed.
Wayman initially told authorities that his stepson was jumping on the bed and accidentally caused the gun to discharge and the witnesses in the case supported this version of the story. However, according to Sheriff Kenny Lemons, this was not how the events unfolded and Wayman was charged after evidence at the scene did not fit with the testimonies and Wayman’s claims that the child accidentally fired a gun that was lying in bed as he jumped on it.
The Dallas Morning News wrote that further questioning revealed that Wayman pointed the gun at Dominic and told him he’d shoot if the boy didn’t stop jumping on the bed, officials said. He then fired the gun, striking Dominic in the back of the head, according to the affidavit. Everything indicates that the person responsible for the little boy’s tragic death was his 18-year-old stepfather, who reportedly shot the toddler because he was allegedly tired of seeing him jumping on the bed.
“Investigators interviewed eyewitnesses in the bedroom at the time of this incident and have determined that Wayman is the individual that pointed and discharged the handgun that caused the death of the victim,” the arrest warrant states.
Dominic Castro was airlifted to United Regional Health Care in Wichita Falls, where he was pronounced dead on Wednesday morning.
When authorities began the investigation, some of the witnesses said the boy was jumping on the bed where the gun was and this caused to the gun to discharge. At the time of the shooting, several adults — including the boy’s mother, Vernoica Rene Castro — were inside the fifth-wheel trailer.
Thanks to the investigation conducted by authorities, ballistic tests concluded that the angle of the shot did not match Wayman’s version of the story. As of the time of this report, Wayman is being held at the Clay County Jail on charges of capital murder and criminal trespass. His bail has been set at $505,000.
The heinous crime shocked neighbors, including Matthew Biehl, who lives a short distance form where the little boy was shot. Biehl spoke to reporters regarding the incident.
“Wow…I would’ve never thought in my life I would see something like that happen around here, especially in a peaceful little place like this,” Biehl was quoted as saying. “It was just an unbelievable site they landed a helicopter in the intersection. I didn’t know exactly what was going on. When I found out what was going on I couldn’t believe it.”
“We don’t want no more of it,” Biehl added. “We want to put a stop to this, that’s all I know.”
[Image via Twitter]