Three gang members have been convicted of murdering a 23-year-old man in Lithonia after setting him up through the online dating service PlentyOfFish.
Jordan “Jo” Collins, a Norcross father, was shot dead at his sister’s Tunbridge Wells Crescent house on Sept. 1, 2016 after arranging to meet with 22-year-old Clarissa McGhee, who had the username “Layla234567” on the dating app.
McGhee, of McDonough, went to the Lithonia home under the pretense of a date with Collins. She took along 22-year-old Nashea Poole, of Hampton, supposedly as a date for Collins’ 26-year-old brother, Chad.
But when the two brothers were lured outside the house by the women around 1:30 a.m., they were ambushed by 26-year-old Antonio “Killa” Avery, and 28-year-old Demarco “Blazalino” Butler, of College Park.
“Unbeknownst to the victims, Butler and Avery lay in wait outside of the home where the victim was lured by Poole,” the DeKalb County District Attorney’s Office said May 17. “Once outside, Collins encountered the two armed men and was shot in the back as he struggled to defend himself.”
Collins died at the scene. His older brother, Chad, was shot multiple times in the leg and arm but survived.
A responding officer found four .22-caliber shell casings in the backyard, along with a casing from a shotgun.
Poole, McGhee and the gunmen fled following the shooting, but were identified by police after officers went through Collins’ phone and saw his interaction with “Layla234567” through the dating app.
A DeKalb County jury returned guilty verdicts against Butler, Avery and Poole on May 16, on charges of murder, felony murder, aggravated assault, violation of the Georgia Street Gang Terrorism and Prevention Act, and weapons offenses.
Trial testimony revealed all three were members of the 9 Trey Bloods criminal street gang, in which Butler and Avery held high-ranking leadership positions, the DA’s Office said.
“Together with Poole, the two men orchestrated a plan to rob the victims via a dating ruse.”
Prior to trial, McGhee entered a guilty plea to a charge of aggravated assault for her role in the crime.
The others will be sentenced at a later date by DeKalb Superior Court Judge Gregory A. Adams, who presided over the trial.
The case was prosecuted by Major Case Unit Senior Assistant District Attorneys Dwayne Brown and Buffy Thomas, with assistance from DA Investigator Sweden Bailey. Detective Vance Van Hees of the DeKalb Police Department led the initial investigation.