ALPHARETTA, Ga – Police have charged two people in the death of a local teenager.
Deri Bonaventura-Flores, 19, and Hali Karlan, 20, have been charged in the murder of Elijah Smith. The announcement was made Saturday afternoon.
Police say Karlan and Flores met with Smith at the Extended Stay Hotel in Alpharetta on June 13. Shortly after the three left the hotel late that night, police say Smith was shot and killed inside the vehicle on Old Milton Parkway near the hotel.
Police say Smith’s body was driven to Twiggs County and placed in a rural wooded area off Glover Road near I-16.
Two days later, on June 15, police received a tip about the crime. Twiggs County sheriff’s deputies and the Georgia Bureau of Investigation recovered Smith’s body. Police have also located the vehicle in which they believe Smith was killed.
Smith's sister and mother drove down from Detroit to look for their 16-year-old loved one.
"I kind of feel for the (sister) because she was real worried," said Marvin Jones, a guest at the hotel who spoke with Smith's sister.
Jones says the relatives passed out flyers on Friday in hopes of finding someone who may have seen Smith.
"He's a good little kid," Jones said, "I never met him but I see the kids running around."
Karlan is currently in the Fulton County jail, while Flores is in the Polk County jail on an unrelated charge.
Detectives are still determining the exact motive for the shooting.