‘He grew up in the church’: Suspect’s father says son is not tied to college student’s murder

UPDATE Feb. 21, 5:40 p.m.: Georgia Bureau of Investigation officials have announced that DeMarcus Little is charged with one count of malice murder. Read more here.

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The family of a murdered college student is upset after a judge granted bond to their daughter’s boyfriend.

DeMarcus Little is not charged with Anitra Gunn’s murder, but he's charged with damaging her property two weeks before someone killed her.

[READ MORE: Boyfriend arrested hours after body of missing college student found]

Channel 2′s Tyisha Fernandes sat in the courtroom Friday and as soon as the judge granted Little bond, she saw the victim’s parents shake their heads.

Gunn’s family asked for privacy, but Fernandes did speak to the suspect's father.

He said his son is innocent.

“He didn’t do this, and I pray they find the killers who did this,” Andre Little said.

Andre Little said it was hard to watch his son walk into the Peach County courtroom in handcuffs wearing an orange jail jumpsuit.

The father said his son has never been in trouble and he’s a respected Army sergeant.

“He’s a soldier. He’s been overseas. He served our country. He’s a good kid. He didn’t do this,” Andre Little said.

Police said DeMarcus Little threw a brick through the college student’s apartment window on Feb. 5 and then someone killed her two weeks later.

Police said the last time she was seen alive was at DeMarcus Little's house.

Although DeMarcus Little has not been charged with murder, Peach County District Attorney David Cooke said there’s evidence that he may be involved and they could be charging him soon.

[RELATED: ‘She had dreams:' Channel 2 reporter reflects on day slain college student visited WSB-TV]

That’s why a judge set bond at $10,000 and he’s requiring an ankle monitor and curfew.

If this was a normal criminal damage case, he would’ve only gotten a $1,500 bond.

Cooke wanted the judge to deny bond because of a possible future murder charge.

“We made clear that because the nature of the evidence, we thought it would be more appropriate to hold him. However, given the circumstances, the judge did something reasonable,” Cooke said.

According to the suspect's family, he is devastated by the death of Gunn.

They said he hasn't been able to grieve because he already feels like he's being charged with murder.

“What’s not being told is that he’s a decorated soldier, a sergeant in the Army, serving our country proudly, made sergeant in three years, no criminal background, grew up in the church, sang in the choir, mannerable, never been in a fight in his life,” Andre Little said.