No one said it was easy to be a Christian.

Marie Fanning found herself in a state of flux after getting the news Thursday morning four Meridian males, three teenagers and one 20-year old, had been arrested by detectives of the Meridian Police Department for the beating death of her brother, David A. Caraway.

"On the one hand I'm angry my brother was killed this way," said Fanning from her Hickory home Thursday afternoon. "If it is determined these people really did do it then I don't want to even look them in the faces. I'm afraid of what I might say. But then again I want to try to forgive them. Nothing is going to bring David back and it is clear to me these individuals, if they are convicted, need help."

MPD Capt. James Sharpe, commander of the Criminal Investigative Division, said the four men who have been arrested in connection with the case were Antonio Chapman, 19, Antshawn Davis, 17 and D'Anthony Davis, 19, all of 2801 Seventh St., and Marcus Anderson, 20, of 2806 Seventh St. All four have been charged with manslaughter and armed robbery. Antshawn Davis was placed on $100,000 bond for each offense. D'Anthony Davis and Marcus Anderson had their bonds set to $50,000 apiece for each offense. Chapman's bond has not been set yet.

According to the press release issued by Sharpe, Caraway's body was found June 30 in an alley behind the Hope Village thrift Shop located at 2716 Eighth St., by a citizen who was walking through the area on the way to work. The citizen stated that Caraway was seen in the alley on the previous morning and it was thought that Caraway was just sleeping. The next morning the citizen saw Caraway lying in the same spot and position and felt that something might be wrong so authorities were notified. Lauderdale County Coroner Clayton Cobler determined that Caraway had been dead as much as two days prior to his body being found.

Detectives with the MPD's Criminal Investigation Division officially classified the death of Caraway as a homicide on July 1.

According to a preliminary autopsy report from the Mississippi State Crime Laboratory, Caraway, 52, suffered superficial, non-life threatening wounds to his head and face area as well as defensive wounds to his hands. It was further determined that Caraway's death was caused by blunt force trauma to the internal organs, which was caused, detectives believe, by a physical assault. Caraway later died due to those injuries.

MPD Chief Benny DuBose said late Thursday information provided by the general public was instrumental in this case as well as in the recent incident in which a young boy was hit by a car.

"In both cases citizens rose up and helped us a great deal," said DuBose. "The patrol officers who have been on the streets also did an excellent job."

Fanning said she tries to be a Christian woman. A retired teacher, Fanning has dealt with thousands of young people from elementary school to high school. She said she felt disturbed as first the suspects were so young and wondered what could have led them to do such a thing to a person as harmless as her brother.

"I know if they are indicted then there will probably be a trial," Fanning said. "It is so sad they are so young. It is also a small comfort to me they will not be able to hurt someone else."

This case will be presented to the November 2009 term of the Lauderdale County Grand Jury for indictment consideration.

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