Two Juveniles to be Tried as Adults in Kidnapping and Robbery

April 14, 2014
by: 
Dwayne Page

Two sixteen year old boys accused of forcing their way into the home of a Smithville woman and then assaulting and robbing her in September have been indicted by the DeKalb County Grand Jury.

Robert Brian Callahan, II and Tony J. Starkes, Jr. were indicted last Monday, April 7 on charges of aggravated robbery, aggravated kidnapping, and theft under $500. They are to be tried as adults in the case. They were arraigned today (Monday, April 14) in DeKalb County Criminal Court.

The boys appeared in DeKalb County Juvenile Court Wednesday, December 11 for a hearing on whether the cases should be transferred from the Juvenile to the Criminal Court.

"I filed a motion to transfer the cases to the criminal court to be tried. We had a hearing and he (Judge Bratten Cook,II) granted the motion. "I asked that these boys be tried as adults due to the serious and aggressive nature of the crimes," said Assistant District Attorney General Greg Strong in an interview with WJLE.

"The petition was amended to include the charge of aggravated kidnapping along with aggravated robbery," said Strong.

They have being held at a Juvenile Detention Center in Nashville.

According to Lieutenant Matt Holmes of the Smithville Police Department, the incident occurred around 11:30 p.m. on Wednesday, September 18 at the woman's Smithville residence. He said the victim, who lives alone, heard something outside and when she opened the door to look outside, the two boys, who were wearing hockey masks forced their way in and assaulted her. " Upon investigation, I found out that the victim heard a noise outside the back of her residence," said Lieutenant Holmes. "She looked out but didn't see anyone. She went to open the door. As she cracked the door open, two masked men forced their way into the residence. One of the suspects tackled her to the ground, pepper sprayed her multiple times, and tried to insert a wash cloth in her mouth to keep her from screaming," he said. "One of the suspects ransacked the house and stole a 38 caliber revolver and multiple other items," he said. The total value of the stolen items came to around $600.

The woman, though injured in the attack with cuts, scrapes, and bruises, was apparently not seriously hurt and declined medical attention.

Though the two boys were carrying razor knives at the time of the attack, they apparently did not use them on the woman.

"We worked the case until about four in the morning (Thursday, September 19) and started back again later in the day," said Lieutenant Holmes. We went to Walmart and were able to trace the sale of the hockey masks back to the juveniles who had bought them prior to the incident," he said.

" We located them (the two suspects) at the high school and placed them under arrest in the classroom on Thursday. Our fear was that they may have brought the gun to school but as it turned out they did not have the gun at school. It was found at their home," said Lieutenant Holmes.

"We found in the attic of their residence the two hockey masks and a loaded 38 caliber handgun and other items that were taken from the victim's home. We also found some pepper spray," Lieutenant Holmes continued.

He said the boys, who lived together in the same household at the time of their arrests, are not related. Neither of the boys is related to the victim. The two boys lived in the same area of the city as the victim but police would not disclose the name of the street or neighborhood where the attack occurred.

Lieutenant Holmes, who was assisted in the investigation by Detective Brandon Donnell and Corporal Travis Bryant said police believe the two boys committed the crimes hoping to find money and drugs.

The two boys also allegedly tried to break into another residence in the same area the night before on Tuesday, September 17 but were unable to make entry.

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