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‘Her Best Friend…’: Warrants Reveal Alexis Crawford was Choked, Smothered to Death Before Jordyn Jones and Barron Brantley Dumped Her Body

Recently released warrants in the case of slain Clark Atlanta University student Alexis Crawford provide disturbing new details about the young woman’s death and disappearance.

Authorities said Crawford, 21, was strangled and her remains placed in a plastic bin, according to Atlanta Police Department records obtained by Atlanta Black Star. The suspects, Crawford’s roommate Jordyn Jones and Jones’ boyfriend Barron Brantley, then dumped the victim’s body in a park in nearby DeKalb County.

After a late-evening run to the liquor store, Crawford and Jones, 21, got into a physical altercation at their off-campus apartment, court documents state that Jones told police. Brantley got involved in the scuffle and, as a result, choked Crawford until she was dead.

The report says “Afterwards, Jones and Brantley placed Crawford in a plastic bin and transported her body to exchange park in Decatur, Ga., where they placed her body in the woods.”

Brantley, 21, later confessed to killing Crawford and taking her remains to the park, authorities said.

Barron Brantley (left), Alexis Crawford (middle) and Jordyn Jones (right). (Photos: Alexis Crawford Facebook/Fulton County Jail)

A separate warrant for Jones paints her as the killer, however. In it, authorities said the 21-year-old “smothered Crawford with a black trash bag until [she] stopped breathing” and died.

Crawford had been missing since Oct. 30 and her family members contacted police after they didn’t hear from her for two days. They said the college student, a senior at the Atlanta HBCU, spoke with her relatives every day no matter how busy she was, so they knew something was terribly wrong.

Police spoke with Jones, who initially said she didn’t know where her friend had gone. She said she had taken Alexis to the liquor store the night before, but when she awoke for classes the next morning, Crawford wasn’t in their apartment and the door was locked.

The investigation into Crawford’s whereabouts prompted a second probe involving the college senior in less than a week. Days earlier, Crawford filed a police report accusing Brantley of kissing and touching her against her will inside the apartment she shared with Jones.

According to documents, Crawford said she, Brantley and Jones had been drinking and that at one point Brantley “rubbed his hand on her shoulder and kissed her on the neck.”

“The victim stated that she asked the suspect what he was doing and he stated he thought she was Ms. Jones,” the report states.

Brantley then followed Crawford into her bedroom, where the victim said she remembered entering her bathroom alone and closing the door behind her. That’s when Jones came into Crawford’s room to find neither the victim or her boyfriend there. Noticing the bathroom door was locked, Jones began knocking repeatedly.

Moments later, Brantley came to the door with his shirt off and Jones noticed Crawford on the floor of the restroom with only her bra on. The suspect insisted he hadn’t had sex with the victim.

According to the police report, “The victim (Crawford) stated to the witness that she passed out and didn’t know what happened and … that she did not remember the suspect being in the restroom with her when she blacked out.”

Crawford was taken to Grady Memorial Hospital where a rape kit was performed. She was reported missing three days later.

Authorities recovered the young woman’s body on Friday.

“The case has come to one of the saddest conclusions possible and has been absolutely heartbreaking,” said Atlanta Police Chief Erika Shields.

Brantley was arrested Friday evening and charged with felony murder. Jones, whom family members said Crawford often referred to “as her best friend,” was taken into custody Saturday morning and also charged with felony murder in the young woman’s killing.

The two Clark Atlanta students were friends since freshman year of college and had formed a tight bond, with Crawford often inviting Jones to spend the holidays with her family, said Rev. Markel Hutchins, a spokesman for the victim’s family.

“Jordyn has spent … Easter, Thanksgiving in the Crawford household,” Hutchins told 11Alive. “She spent other days there, she knew Alexis’ siblings and parents, and they knew her. For Jordyn to be involved, it’s heartwrenching.”

Both Jones and Brantley have waived their right to a first appearance hearing, court documents show. No motive has been established.

Both suspects remain held without bond at the Fulton County Jail.

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