COA affirms godmother’s conviction for assisting teen after murder

The Indiana Court of Appeals has affirmed a northern Indiana woman’s felony conviction for assisting her godson after he murdered his teenage girlfriend, finding she did so with the intent to hinder his punishment.

In January 2018, police found a car lying on its side at an intersection with an unresponsive teenager, Tysiona Crawford, inside. Crawford was shot and killed by her boyfriend, Rahim Brumfield, who was later convicted of murder and sentenced to 60 years in prison. His conviction was affirmed on appeal.

Brumfield and his mother and godmother, Kickey Anderson and Takisha Jacobs, respectively, approached police the following day. Jacobs informed law enforcement that she had information about Brumfield’s whereabouts from the previous evening, leading police to investigate her statements.

However, Detective Timothy Wiley later determined that Jacobs’ claim that she picked up Brumfield and took him to an apartment complex was not credible and that investigating her statement had slowed down the investigation into Crawford’s murder. Thus, she was charged and convicted in St. Joseph Superior Court of Level 5 felony assisting a criminal and was sentenced to four years, all suspended, and placed on three years of probation.

The Indiana Court of Appeals affirmed Jacobs’ conviction Tuesday, finding evidence was presented to support a reasonable inference that she had lied to police.

“Although she told Detective (Gery) Mullins that she went home after she dropped off Brumfield, she was actually in a class at Ivy Tech from about 7:00 to about 9:00 p.m. In addition, she was at work in Elkhart until 6:24 p.m,” Judge Terry Crone wrote for the unanimous appellate panel. “There was only about thirty-five minutes between the time she left work and the time her class started. Google Maps indicated that if she had left work, picked up Brumfield, driven him to Park Jefferson, and then driven to Ivy Tech, it would have taken forty-eight minutes. The forty-eight minutes does not account for the wintry driving conditions on that date.

“From all this evidence, a reasonable jury could infer that Jacobs, Brumfield, and Anderson formulated a story at Jacobs’s house before they went to the police station and that Jacobs lied to Detective Mullins to establish that Brumfield left Crawford while she was still alive and was not with Crawford when she was murdered. In other words, the evidence supports a reasonable inference that Jacobs lied to help Brumfield avoid punishment by providing him with a false alibi,” Crone concluded.

The case is Takisha Monique Jacobs v. State of Indiana, 20A-CR-277.

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