A Walmart Santa was busted in connection with the deaths of his two kids — who were recently discovered buried in his Georgia back yard.
The remains of Elwyn Crocker Jr., a 14-year-old who vanished two years ago, and his sister Mary, 14, who was last seen in October, were unearthed in the small farming town of Guyton last week, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.
Deputies searching the home on a tip were led to the graves by the kids’ dad, Elwyn Crocker Sr., who turned 50 on Christmas, and until recently worked as a Santa at a store in Rincon.
His wife and the kids’ stepmother, Candice Crocker, 33, her mother, Kim Wright, 50, and Wright’s boyfriend, Anthony Prater, 55, were also collared on charges of concealing a death and child cruelty. They remain in Effingham County jail without bond.
A third child, who has special needs, was found alive in the home.
“I’ve been doing this 41 years, and a while ago I almost broke down in tears,” Effingham County Sheriff Jimmy McDuffie told reporters, his voice shaking. “It’s that bad. I cannot understand how you do children like this. It’s horrible.”
Neither Elwyn Jr. nor his sister were officially reported missing. How they died is still unclear.
The siblings had been enrolled in Effingham County schools but were withdrawn for home school before they were last seen.
Neighbors said they often saw Mary doing yard work.
“Other kids said at school they could tell stuff was wrong with her hands. They were red,” neighbor Gary Bennett told WTOC. “That was from being out in the yard, out there most of the time working …”
The family had been reported to the Division of Family and Children Services in the past, cops said.
Investigators are still trying to make sense of the case and hope for help from the children’s mother, who is in South Carolina and believed to be homeless.
“The biggest question some of us are asking is, how did the little boy go missing for two years and nobody identified that?” sheriff’s office spokeswoman Gena Sullivan said.
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