Stimulus check murders: Court records confirm motive, family says system failed them

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INDIANAPOLIS (WXIN) – An Indianapolis quadruple murder suspect is in custody Tuesday, and court records say a stimulus check was the motive for the killings.

The affidavit filed in the case shows that after being arrested, the suspect, Malik Halfacre, confessed to the murders of four people inside a home on the southeast side of the city.

Halfacre allegedly admitted he took the money after the shooting, then dropped his six-month-old daughter off at his sister’s home and drove to his friend’s house where he was eventually arrested.

The shooting claimed the lives of Tomeeka Brown, Anthony Johnson, Dequan Moore as well as seven-year-old Eve Moore.

Family provided photos of the four homicide victims.

The mother of Malik’s child survived, but her family feels those deaths could have been avoided if the suspect had been punished more severely for previous acts of violence.

“She was afraid to leave this man because she knew he would come back and kill her. He had threatened her numerous times, put sugar in her tank, slashed her tires, shot up her car. She lived in fear with this man. She suffered through this before the shooting,” said family member Shawn Brown.

The victim’s family explained that Malik had a history of violence long before the murders.

In 2017, prosecutors claim Malik shot another man multiple times. That victim survived, and court records show Malik was charged with aggravated battery.

A plea agreement later allowed him to plead guilty to a lesser charge of pointing a firearm, which resulted in a jail sentence of just a few months.

Prosecutors would only say witness cooperation complicated that case and resulted in the essential witnesses being excluded by the court.

Picture of PC and prior mugshot filed in 2017 case.

According to police reports, last May Malik was also suspected of shooting the car of his child’s mother. He was never charged with that crime.

“She was afraid to leave him because she didn’t have faith in the system,” said Brown.

“I think it’s heartbreaking to hear from the families,” said Indy State Fraternal Order of Police President Rick Snyder. “The victims of these crimes are not going to talk to police or cooperate because they know the violent offender is coming right back out.”

Snyder believes Malik’s case illustrates how a catch-and-release criminal justice system enables violence to persist on the streets of Indianapolis.

“The system is broken. It’s extremely broken in Marion County,” said Snyder. “Don’t take our word for it. Convene a commission on criminal justice and collect the data and see if what we’re saying is correct. You’ll see what our officers see. The system is broken.”

Malik remains behind bars at the Marion County Jail. He’s being held without bond until formal charges are filed.

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