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Another gang member arrested for drive-by shooting that killed toddler in Athens trailer park


By Joe Johnson

The Athens-Clarke County Police Department Wednesday night announced the arrest of a second gang member in connection with a drive-by shooting last week that claimed the life of a child,

Additionally, ACCPD said that warrants for the arrest of another suspect had been obtained, bringing to four the number of gang members to have been charged for their alleged involvement in the deadly shooting last Friday afternoon.

The incident occurred when a gang members shot from a moving SUV at a rival gang member who was outside of his home at the Hallmark Estate mobile home park. All of the gunshots missed their mark, and instead passed into the home and killed 3-year-old Kyron Santino Zarco-Smith and wounded his 9-year-old brother.

Kyron Santino Zarco-Smith

The young victims are the stepbrothers of the gang member who was the intended target of the drive-by. They had been sitting together on a couch watching television when they were shot.

The first arrest was made on Saturday, when 17-year-old Julian Omar Cubillos being charged with murder, three counts of aggravated assault, and violating the Georgia Street Gang Terrorism and Prevention Act.

Julian Omar Cubillos

The second arrest was made today, by the Clarke County Sheriff's Office acting on a tip concerning the whereabouts of another gang member, with deputies taking into custody 16-year-old Jayden Brown. He was charged with the same crimes as Cubillos.

Authorities Wednesday night continundated their search for Dakious Rico Echols, an 18-year-old gang member for whom arrest warrants had previously been obtained.

Dakious Rico Echols

On Wednesday night police announced that they had obtained warrants for the arrest of a fourth gang member, 22-year-old Desmontrez Mathis.

The offer of a cash reward of up to $2,000 remains in effect for information that leads to additional arrests.

Anyone with information concerning this case should contact Detective Paul Johnson at 762-400-7060 or paul.johnson@accgovcom .

Anonymous calls can be made through the Crime Stoppers Tip Line at 706-705-4775.


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Great job by the Clarke County Sheriff’s Deputies!! They apprehended a armed and dangerous suspect without injury.

It is a shame they are required to perform such high risk arrests while being paid thousands less than other law enforcement officers.

Why are their lives considered of less value than police officers?

Why don’t the citizens of Athens-Clarke County demand that the law enforcement officers of the Sheriff’s Office be paid the same rate as the police department?

Would you risk your life or want your loved ones to place their lives in jeopardy while receiving thousands of dollars less than other officers?

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It is time that our elected Mayor and Commissioners are asked why they permit such disrespect of our Sheriff’s Deputies!

Why do they refuse equal pay for equal performance of duty and risk?

Why do they make it impossible for the Sheriff to offer the same pay and benefits as the police department in the recruitment of law enforcement candidates?

Speak up Athens, demand equality for these Deputies, acknowledge their value to your safety and the community.

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