Dejanirra “D.J.” Elrod was shot and killed in the doorway of her relative’s home July 15, 2012, by a boyfriend, Trevor Lamont Nuckles, who was found guilty of murder in her death.
District Attorney Shannon Wallace said there were five deaths in the county related to domestic violence in 2012, making Cherokee County seventh highest in the state for domestic violence related deaths.
“As far as Cherokee County goes, 2012 was the highest we’ve had at least since 2009,” Wallace said.
The candlelight vigil hin starts at 7:30 p.m. at the Cannon Park Gazebo at 100 North St. in Canton. Community members are encouraged to come and show their support and remember others who have been lost to domestic violence.
“The vigil is the year remembrance of her death,” Wallace said. “I actually handled the case from the very beginning and then prosecuted throughout.”
Wallace, along with Family Violence Center Executive Director Meg Rogers, will speak at the vigil about a call to action to end domestic violence in Cherokee communities.
“There are a lot of times that domestic violence-related crimes are kept either really quiet by the victim or even if the families know about it they’re kept within the family and unfortunately when it doesn’t get stopped, it escalates and can turn tragic pretty quickly,” Wallace said.
The Georgia Commission on Family Violence ranked Georgia 10th in the nation for the rate of men that kill women in single-victim homicides.
Nuckles was sentenced to life in prison plus five years for felony murder, 20 years for aggravated assault and sentenced for many more crimes, all to run concurrently in the case, court records show.
The court did not recommend parole, but if parole were granted, Nuckles has been banished from Cherokee County and prohibited from contacting Elrod’s family.
Nuckles had a history of violence, including an arrest on Christmas Day in 2011 when he was accused of punching a relative in the face, a June 2010 felony drug charge and misdemeanor charges for obstruction and giving a false name, and in 2010 he was charged with felony aggravated assault, according to arrest warrants.