A Georgia family is searching for answers after a middle school boy lost his life after a high-speed chase in Paulding County.
On September 10, Leden Boykins, 12, rode with a family neighbor, Charlie Moore, and Moore’s teen son, 14, to clean parking lots at night. Leden’s grandmother told 11Alive News that she gave Leden permission to go with the neighbors so that he could earn some extra spending money.
Leden’s parents were in Michigan at the time, attending a funeral.
According to a Georgia State Patrol incident report, Moore was pulled over off of Highway 92 in Paulding County for “driving recklessly and at a high rate of speed” on late Friday night. Moore refused to get out of his white Kia Sorrento, reportedly claiming he didn’t feel comfortable with so many officers present.
“He told the 911 operator, he said, ‘I need for y’all to get a supervisor out here, there’s too many police cars and I’m in fear of my life,’” Leden’s mother, Toni Boykins said.
When a trooper allegedly began hitting at Moore’s car window, he fled the scene, leading troopers on a 3-mile high-speed chase. A trooper performed a PIT maneuver, causing Moore’s vehicle to flip over in a ditch near Indian Trail and Highway 92.
The collision caused fatal injuries to Leden. Moore and his son were taken to area hospitals with injuries, but both survived.
Police subsequently arrested Moore afterward. He now faces a slew of charges, including, in part:
- Murder in the commission of a felony
- Aggravated assault against a police officer
- Driving with an open container
- Fleeing or attempting to elude
- Child endangerment
- Failure to maintain lane
- First-degree vehicle homicide
A 911 audio dispatch report obtained by CrimeOnline indicated the dispatcher informed the trooper that children were inside the car. Moore’s son reportedly called 911 for his father and told them Moore was afraid to get out of his car. The dispatcher learned during the call that two children were inside the vehicle, and subsequently relayed the information to the responding authorities.
Trooper: “This vehicle better stop before they get put in a ditch.”
Dispatcher: “There are children in the car.”
A few minutes later, the trooper said, “we’ve got one under the vehicle,” referring to the crash after the vehicle indeed ended up in a ditch.
Moore’s wife reportedly said that her husband identified himself as a “sovereign citizen” and kept his window rolled up as his son called 911. Moore said that there were several officers and troopers at the scene, but no supervisors overlooking the incident.
“What I do know is, when you see those kids, your decision-making process is supposed to kick in,” Leden’s father, Anthony Boykins said. “But couldn’t they put a roadblock up and protect those kids? They couldn’t figure out any other way than to flip that car over?”
The Boykins family told 11Alive that they have no idea where Leden’s body was taken and no one from law enforcement contacted them to tell them what happened.
“We’re trying to understand,” Anthony Boykins added, “who identified the body, and why the body was released to perform an autopsy without communicating with the parents.”
The story is developing. Check back with CrimeOnline as additional details become available.
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[Feature Photo: Leden Boykins/Family Handout]