Disturbing new details have come out today, in the brutal murders of 5 people and an unborn child over the weekend in Citronelle; all this, as the families prepare to bury their loved ones.
We’ll warn you to take caution as you read the next line. According to the Mobile County Sheriff’s Office, Derrick Dearman shot the victims and then struck them each with an ax while they were sleeping. Police say he had fled the scene on Saturday with Laneta Lester and infant after he committed the heinous acts. He drove them to Mississippi and turned himself in later that day. Dearman was then extradited from Mississippi Monday.
Now he sits in Mobile County Jail and awaits a bond hearing Wednesday. Before being locked up, he apologized several times and said drugs made him see things that weren’t there. The apologies provide little solace to the families of the victims, who today, are still fighting to get through tears.
“That’s our family that is not here anymore I won’t be able to touch them ever again, and I’ve touched them for 36 and 27 years, cause he made a choice, and I can’t touch them. I got pictures, and that’s all I got of them,” said Rhonda Jordan-Henson, Shannon Randall’s cousin.
Jordan-Henson says her family is truly thankful for the outpouring of support they’ve received because of this tragedy. She hopes they can only be there for others as some have been for them. But as they heal, they’re also having to go through the process of laying their loved ones to rest, something they say they’re totally unprepared for.
“How are you going to come up with the money to bury 5 of your family members?” asked Heather Reed, victim’s family member.
Their most recent estimate puts the funeral expenses around $50,000.
They’ve set up a GoFundMe account for help. Reed says she’s the one managing the account. And she says they’ll take help in any way; their contact is on the account.
The next couple of days will be especially hard on the family. The wake and funeral for Shannon Randall, Joseph Turner, and Robert Brown will be held at the same time. The wake is Thursday from 6 pm to 9 pm at Restoration Church, and the funeral is the next day at 11 am.
Services for another victim, Chelsea Reed, are also this week.
The wake will be Friday at 6 pm and the funeral will be the next day 11 am.
Both services for Chelsea Reed will be held at Memorial Baptist Church.