Cops found a baby's body stuffed in a freezer in Alabama. Now parents are in custody

Amanda Gail Oakes and Carlton James Mathis
Amanda Gail Oakes and Carlton James Mathis Dothan Police Department

Two Georgia residents are expected to face murder charges after the body of their infant boy was found stuffed in a freezer at a Dothan, Ala., hotel Monday, according to Dothan Police.

Police say they got a tip on June 1 from the Hall County Sheriffs Department that James Mathis of Gainesville, Ga., and Amanda Gail Oakes of Murrayville, Ga., might be in the Dothan area with their 6-month-old son, Carlton James Oakes — and that the baby might be dead.

Police searched all weekend but couldn't find any trace of them, but did learn the couple may have fled to Florida.

On June 4, police located the couple at an apartment building in Bronson, Fla., southwest of Gainesville. Deputies from the Levy County Sheriffs Department and the Alachua County Sheriffs Department confronted Mathis as he left the building, according to police.

Police say Mathis pulled out a handgun and tried to flee. He got into a car and held a gun to the head of a driver. Then a SWAT team member shot him four times, according to the Dothan Eagle.

He and Oates were both taken into custody, and Mathis was stable after receiving treatment at an area hospital, according to the paper.

After the couple's arrest, police say they learned the location of the baby's body and found him in the freezer of a room at the In Town Suites hotel in Dothan. They say the body had probably been there for five or six days.

"It is believed that the child was deceased prior to being placed in the freezer, however foul play is suspected in the child’s death," police wrote in a news release. They said murder charges were expected after an autopsy .

Hall County Sheriff’s Office Lt. Scott Ware told The Gainesville Times Mathis was a member of the 'Ghost Face Gang," a prison gang active in Georgia.

Mathis, 28, and Oakes, 36, are both charged with abuse of a corpse, with more charges expected, and have a bond set at $15,000, according to police. They are awaiting extradition from Florida back to Dothan, Ala.

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