Andrez Martina: Milwaukee man killed grandson, 12, with hammer over missing cash
Trigger Warning: Violence against children, graphic content
MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN: A 53-year-old man in Milwaukee abused his 12-year-old grandson for five hours over money that went missing from his wallet. He allegedly beat his grandson to death after he began using a hammer during the ordeal. The kid's great-grandmother who is disabled was in the house and watched this tragedy unfold helplessly. The accused has argued the hammer was not meant to kill the boy but admitted to "losing control" and beating his grandson which led to the child's death on Sunday, August 29.
We have reported similar incidents from the past including the death of a six-year-old from Tennessee at the hands of his grandfather, Terry Majors. He shot the kid and his 61-year-old wife before turning the gun on himself in this disturbing-murder suicide case. In another incident, 18-months old toddler Chloe Wiegand fell 150ft from the cruise ship window while being watched by her grandfather Salvatore Anello who later pleaded guilty to negligent homicide and managed to escape jail time. Back in 2014, Florida man Don Spirit had killed his family which included his daughter and six grandkids after which he pulled the trigger on himself.
Who is Andrez Martina?
Andrez Martina, the grandfather of the 12-year-old victim Andre Smith II had asked the child's legal guardian to send him over to sleep at his house. At around 8 am on Sunday morning, Aug 29, Martina sent a text to Smith's grandmother Illysha McCroy, the legal guardian of the kid, "accusing (the 12-year-old boy) of stealing the defendant's money," according to the criminal complaint filed. On being asked where the child was, Martina responded, "he's bleeding". The guardian then asked her daughter to go to Martina's house to check on the kid.
Martina is a multiple-time felon (at least four times over) convicted of drug dealing and was arrested for a homicide in the late '80s. McCroy had allowed Martina "the chance to get to know his grandkids" after his return to Milwaukee from Indiana in May this year. He "wanted to reconnect with his grandchildren" after not being in their lives previously. According to Martina, he woke up on Sunday morning at 3 am and "noticed his wallet was open and money was missing." Martina went to the living room to confront Smith who had he claimed had a problem with stealing. The complaint states, he "smacked (the 12-year-old boy) repeatedly, demanding that (the boy) get the defendant's money." Martina "claimed to not know what else to do in order to get his money back," the complaint says. The boy "ran into the bathroom and locked himself inside in an attempt to protect himself from the defendant. The defendant picked the lock open and 'lost it' on (the boy)," according to the complaint.
The young boy is said to have turned his pockets inside out to prove to Martina he didn't steal the money. Martina told officials he continued to repeatedly hit Smith even after the kid went to a cousin's bedroom to retrieve the cash. The complaint noted that Martina recalled, "I'm not killing him, I'm just bopping his [expletive],” according to CBS58. At one point when Martina was attacking Smith in the bathroom, he pushed the child so hard his head left a hole in the wall. Smith's younger brother who also suffered a broken finger among other injuries during this incident told police that Martina used a mallet, sledgehammer, a coat rack, and a cane during the attack. The coroner's office determined Smith suffered a severe skull fracture, consistent with multiple blunt force blows to the head.
In a later interview with the police, Smith's great-grandmother said she was "awakened by the defendant yelling" at Smith. She told police she "saw the defendant striking (the boy) with a hammer." Smith's mother Nakeda Martina told Fox6 News, "My dad killed somebody in 1989. The system failed to stop him from doing that again. Unfortunately, his last victim was my child."