An 18-year-old man has been apprehended after he was mistakenly released from Maryland police custody despite facing charges in D.C. in the death of a 16-year-old girl.
Dekale Bowman was released from the custody of Prince George's County Police on Thursday, May 3. Capital Area Regional Fugitive Task Force officers found Bowman on Monday and arrested him.
Prince George's Police spokesperson Yolonda Smedley said police checked a national database of warrants when Bowman was brought to them and before he was released, but nothing was in the system.
"We take our time with that one, because we don't want this to happen," Smedley said.
Smedley called the issue a system error.
D.C. police are investigating why Prince George's County didn't know about the second-degree murder charge.
Bowman was arrested in January and charged with second-degree murder in the death of Taiyania Thompson, police said.
Thompson was shot inside an apartment on the 1000 block of Mt. Olivet Road Northeast on Jan. 25. She died on Jan. 28 in the hospital.
On Saturday, D.C. police said Bowman was wanted on an outstanding warrant.
According to court records, Bowman had been taken to Upper Marlboro, Maryland, in a separate case involving a stolen car. He was bonded out by family and authorities released him instead of returning him to the D.C. Jail or the Department of Youth Rehabilitative Services.
A spokesperson for the Prince George's County Department of Corrections said on Sunday that Bowman was brought into their custody on Wednesday, May 2, and was released on bond the next day. The spokesperson said there was nothing in the department's system indicating that he had any charges or warrants until Friday afternoon.
Bowman didn't show up to a court appointment on Friday afternoon.
The Prince George's County State's Attorneys office confirmed to News4 it was looking into how Bowman was released.
Previous court records said Bowman told a witness the shooting was an accident. Police said Thompson and Bowman had been dating for eight months, according to The Washington Post.
Thompson's grandmother, Tammy Carter, said it wasn't the first time her family had experienced a violent death.
When Thompson was 5 months old, her father, Dennis Wayne Carter, was shot and killed on 21st Street and Maryland Avenue in Northeast. He was only 17.
"My heart is torn to pieces. She's only a year younger than he was when he passed. It's crazy," Carter said. "It just brings back so many memories, like it just happened yesterday."
Thompson's father is buried in the Mount Olivet Cemetery, near where Thompson was shot. Carter said Thompson was devoted to her father's memory and would often go visit his grave.
Thompson told her grandmother she wanted to be buried at the same cemetery as her father when she died, but no one expected that to happen so soon or in this way.
"I don't even know how we're going to get through this," Carter said. "But we're strong, we're going to fight through it, we're going to make the best of it and we're going to keep her memory alive and his."
Carter said she'll remember her granddaughter's smile and caring personality the most.
"She was bubbly," Carter said with a smile. "She would never harm anybody. She'd give you the shirt off her back. That's how sweet she was."