Woman, boyfriend accused of killing teen, dumping body outside Macon

by: Steve Gehlbach, Chris Jose Updated:

FULTON COUNTY, Ga. - Police say a woman and her boyfriend shot and killed a 16-year old and then dumped his body in Twiggs County.

Elijah Smith was reported missing by his mother on Tuesday from an extended stay hotel on Old Milton Parkway in Alpharetta.

Marvin Jones told Channel 2’s Chris Jose he met Smith's family on Friday. The family was in town from Detroit, passing out missing person fliers.

The Alpharetta Police Department said Elijah Smith's body was found Saturday morning in Twiggs County.
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“She asked us if we've seen him. He's missing. I thought he gone off for a minute and come on back,” Jones said. “They come from Detroit and was helping his mom find him, but they couldn't find him nowhere. To hear that he's dead like that is real shocking.”

Police say Deri Bonaventura-Flores, 19, and his girlfriend, Hali Karlan, 20, met the teenager at the hotel.

They all left together late Tuesday night, according to police. Police say Smith was shot and killed inside a car.

“Just a kid. I’d sure like to know the motive,” Jones said about the incident.


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A motive isn't clear yet. Investigator said Smith's body was driven to Twiggs County and dumped in a wooded area near Interstate 16.

The Twiggs County Sheriff's Office discovered Smith's body on Friday.

Jose learned Karlan lives with her mother in Roswell. The mother didn't answer the door when Jose stopped by Saturday night.

Neighbors described Karlan as a troubled person.

“A good kid. (He) Had a future ahead of him; man, (to) find him dead like that, that's crazy. Scared me. Makes me want to move back to Alabama,” hotel guest Marvin Jones told Jose.

Bonaventura-Flores is currently at the Polk County Jail on an unrelated charge. Karlan is being held at the Fulton County Jail. 

Records show Karlan has been charged with murder and giving false statements to police.

Jail documents for Bonaventura-Flores are currently not available.