• Young father trying to get back stolen items gunned down in front of girlfriend

    By: Chris Jose

    Updated:

    COBB COUNTY, Ga. - UPDATE: Police have now charged the victim's girlfriend and two others with murder in the death of George Vela.

    ORIGINAL STORY JULY 24:

    Police are searching for someone who shot and killed a young father in front of his girlfriend outside their home in Cobb County. 

    George Vela and his family had just gotten home from seeing "The Lion King" with their kids before the shooting.

    "I hear somebody say, 'Get out of the car.' He's ducking down like something is wrong. At this point, I'm just trying to get to him," his girlfriend,Yaya Gil, told Channel 2's Chris Jose.

    The 24-year-old father left behind two young children, ages 6 and 1. 

    "I hope you know the damage you've caused. And we'll find you," Gil said in a message to her boyfriend's killer.


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    The couple noticed someone broke into their home on Hickory Trail in Mableton and stole clothing and shoes Vela was selling online. They called police, and officers showed up to take a report. 

    Ten minutes after they left, Vela noticed a car parked two houses away because it seemed out of place. Gil told Jose her boyfriend saw the stolen items in the car.

    "From my peripheral vision, I see the car leaving. And then it's just shot after shot after shot," she said. "And he just falls. So, I just held him, and I already knew."

    Family members told Jose they believe the killer waited for police to leave. Vera's mother was inside the couple's home with their children. She heard the gunshots and ran outside.

    The family is so terrified that they moved out of the home. 

    "Were they going to come back and rob him again? Did they think they missed something? Were they going to kill the whole family?" Leigh Ann Smith said. 

    Police say a witness told them a silver sedan with a rear spoiler was involved. Anyone with information is asked to contact police at 770-499-3945.

    Funeral services for Vela will be on July 27 at 11 a.m. at White Columns Chapel in Mableton. In lieu of flowers, the family is asking for donations to help cover expenses. 

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