Before the boyfriend of slain Fort Valley State University student Anitra Gunn made his first court appearance on Tuesday, Feb. 25, 2020, to face a malice murder charge, law enforcement officials named the manner in which the young college co-ed died.
According to the arrest warrant affidavit, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation claims that Army soldier DeMarcus Little choked Gunn to death on Valentine’s Day, according to WGXA-Georgia.
Gunn went missing on Feb. 14, several days after Dunn reportedly smashed the windows to her apartment and slashed her vehicle’s tires, authorities say. After she died from asphyxiation due to strangulation, Little then tried to hide her body in a shallow grave along a wooded area on Greer Road in Crawford County, Georgia.
Little, who was stationed at Fort Gordon, appeared in court on Monday, Feb. 24, in Knoxville, Georgia. The judge read off the charges in court, which include malice murder as well as criminal damage to property from the Feb. 5 incident.
Little’s attorney Benjamin Davis says the crime for which he is being accused of is not in his character.
“This is a soldier,” Davis said. “He has a great military background. There’s no history of violence in his background. He has no criminal history, so this would be out of character for anyone in his situation to be charged with something like this.”
Gunn was a senior agriculture major at Fort Valley State in central Georgia, about a 90-minute drive south of her alma mater, Westlake High School, in Atlanta.
Gunn’s grandfather Christopher announced to WSB-TV that her homegoing service is scheduled for Saturday, Feb. 29, in Opelika, Alabama.
Listen to the press conference announcing the charges against Little.