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My Name Was Antonio West


Via forwarded email, July 17, 2013:
Antonio West

Netlore Archive: Viral text compares the cold-blooded murder of 13-month-old baby Antonio Santiago (misidentified as 'Antonio West') of Brunswick, Georgia to the killing of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin in Florida one year earlier.

Via forwarded email

Description: Viral text / Forwarded email
Circulating since: July 2013
Status: Mixed (see below)

Text of forwarded email contributed by a reader, July 17, 2013:

You won't recognize me. My name was Antonio West and I was the 13-month old child who was shot at point blank range by two teens who were attempting to rob my mother, who was also shot. A Grand Jury of my mommy's peers from Brunswick GA determined the teens who murdered me will not face the death penalty... too bad I was given a death sentence for being innocent and defenseless.

My family made the mistake of being white in a 73% non-white neighborhood, but my murder was not ruled a Hate Crime. Nor did President Obama take so much as a single moment to acknowledge my murder.

I am one of the youngest murder victims in our great Nation's history, but the media doesn't care to cover the story of my tragic demise, President Obama has no children who could possibly look like me - so he doesn't care and the media doesn't care because my story is not interesting enough to bring them ratings so they can sell commercial time slots.

There is not a white equivalent of Al Sharpton because if there was he would be declared racist, so there is no one rushing to Brunswick GA to demand justice for me. There is no White Panther party to put a bounty on the lives of those who murdered me. I have no voice, I have no representation and unlike those who shot me in the face while I sat innocently in my stroller - I no longer have my life.

So while you are seeking justice for Treyvon, please remember to seek justice for me too. Tell your friends about me, tell you families, get tee shirts with my face on them and make the world pay attention, just like you did for Treyvon.

Analysis: It's true that Antonio Santiago (misidentified as "Antonio West" in the text above), the 13-month-old son of Brunswick, Georgia residents Sherry West and Louis Santiago, died of a gunshot wound to the face on March 21, 2013.

Two African-American youths, 17-year-old De'Marquise Elkins and 15-year-old Dominique Lang, were arrested the next day. A grand jury indictment handed down one week later charged them with the murder of Antonio Santiago, as well as the shooting and attempted robbery of his mother, Sherry West. In accordance with Georgia law, the defendants won't face the death penalty because they were both under 18 when the crime was committed.

I leave it to individual readers to judge for themselves whether comparisons to the Trayvon Martin case are apt.

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Sources and further reading:

Two Teen Boys Arrested in Shooting Death of Georgia Infant in Stroller
Fox News, 22 March 2013

Baby Shot Dead in Stroller; 2 Georgia Teens Charged with Murder
CNN, 23 March 2013

Baby's Death Marks 2nd Time Georgia Mom Loses a Son to Violence
CNN, 25 March 2013

Teen Defendants in Brunswick Baby's Shooting Death in Court
Savannah Morning News, 26 March 2013

Mother, Aunt of Georgia Baby Murder Suspect Arrested, Charged with Lying
NBC News, 26 March 2013

Brunswick Baby Murder Brings Racial Tensions to the Surface
The Grio, 26 March 2013

Teen Suspect Indicted in Ga. Baby Slaying and Second Shooting
CBS News, 28 March 2013

Police: Handgun Found 2 Miles from Where Georgia Baby Shot Dead
NBC News, 28 March 2013

Suspect in Murder of Antonio Santiago Will Stay in Jail
Brunswick News, 6 April 2013

Gun Residue Found on Slain Ga. Baby's Parents, Report Says
CBS News, 16 July 2013

De'Marquise Elkins, Ga. Teen Convicted of Killing Baby in Stroller, Sentenced to Life in Prison
CBS News, 13 September 2013

Last updated 10/10/13

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