A restraining order did not protect a Lithonia mother and two of her children who were allegedly killed by her son.
DeKalb County Jail Eugene Quatron McCoy, 21, is charged with three counts of murder and one count of aggravated assault in the attacks on four people at a home near Lithonia.
.The mother and two of her children were stabbed to death and her teenage daughter was critically wounded in a Sunday night knife attack allegedly by her oldest child, 21-year-old Eugene Quatron McCoy, according to police.
McCoy was arrested shortly after police were called around 8:45 p.m. Sunday to a house on Rockland Road by McCoy's teenage sister. She was the only survivor of a vicious attack that left her mother, a younger sister and a brother dead.
Sunday night at the crime scene, police retrieved a knife they believed be the "primary weapon" based on the "preliminary investigation, interviews and statements from the suspect," police spokeswoman Mekka Parish told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Monday.
But 12 hours after the 911 call was placed, a reporter found a second bloody knife on the front porch of the brick ranch where the attacks happened. The knife was under a chair but in plain view. Glass from the broken window was scattered on the porch and a slashed window screen appeared to have been flung onto the steps.
"There is no question that this additional evidence should have been collected when the crime scene was processed," Parish said. "The department will look into this oversight and take appropriate action."
A spokesman for the DeKalb district attorney, who will prosecute McCoy if the case moves forward, declined to comment on the evidence left at the crime scene.
"We want to let the police officers do their jobs and we'll review the case once we get it," spokesman Eric Burton said.
Former DeKalb District Attorney J. Tom Morgan said overlooking the knife could be explained given the crime scene, the number of victims and the amount of blood there.
"In the pandemonium of a triple homicide, even the best CSI [crime scene investigations] personnel are going to make mistakes," Morgan said. "I do not blame anybody for not finding that because it is such a chaotic crime scene with three deaths and a critical injury."
But there could be evidentiary problems once this case reaches trial.
"It's inexcusable and unexplainable and it shouldn't have happened," veteran defense attorney Steve Sadow said.
Police arrested the 21-year-old McCoy as he was walking away from the house Sunday night. According to jail records, McCoy lived at the Rockland Road house even though there was a restraining order prohibiting him from being in contact with his family.
McCoy was booked into the DeKalb County jail early Monday on three counts of murder and one charge of aggravated assault. McCoy's teenage sister escaped and ran through the woods to a house in a nearby subdivision to call police. She was taken to a local hospital in critical condition.
While police confirmed the victims were McCoy's mother, brother and sisters, their names were not released.
According to court records, there is a history of family violence.
McCoy has been arrested six times prior to Monday, including twice for allegedly violating family violence orders. All the cases were before DeKalb County judges.
The first arrest was in 2007 when McCoy was sentenced to 12 months' probation for burglary, but that case did not involve family violence.
Last May 26, McCoy pleaded guilty to violation of a temporary protective order and was put on probation for a year and ordered to have no contact with the victim.
McCoy pleaded guilty last Sept. 8 to disorderly conduct and was sentenced to 23 days of confinement and 12 months probation.
Then on Dec. 8, McCoy pleaded no contest to family violence battery, disorderly conduct and criminal trespass. He was sentenced to 14 days in jail and two years probation.
He was ordered on Dec. 21 to undergo a mental health evaluation.
He also was told he could have no contact with the victim, a different woman, and to attend 12 anger management classes.
His last previous arrest was on Jan. 8 on a criminal trespass charge. Court records show McCoy pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 12 months probation. He also was sentenced to jail time but received credit for the 67 days and was released on March 16, the day he enter the plea.