Trial Set for May 2, 2023 in 5-Year-Old’s Death

Trial Set for May 2, 2023 in 5-Year-Old’s Death


A third criminal charge was added to the two originally handed down to Dawn Elaine Coleman, 40, Shreveport, Louisiana and could send her to jail for up to 105 years for the death of a 5-year-old Georgia boy found in a suitcase near Pekin. 

Coleman’s charges were read to her this afternoon at Washington Circuit Court.

Coleman was arraigned in front of Judge Larry Medlock, who set her initial bond at $5 million and her trial for May 2, 2023 at 8:30a.

Medlock read the original two charges of Clearly shaken and upset, Dawn Elaine Coleman was led into Washington Circuit Court a little before 1:30p for her arraignment after being transferred to Washington County Saturday night. 

She was originally arrested on October 19 on charges of Neglect of a Dependent Resulting in Death, a Level 1 Felony, and Obstruction of Justice, a Level 6 Felony. A third charge of Aiding, Inducing or Causing Murder, another felony.

Medlock said Count 1 was a Level 1 Felony and could bring a total of 30-40 years in prison. He said the advisory sentence is 30 years and up to a $10,000 fine.

He said Count 2, a Level 6 Felony would bring no time in jail and could be treated as a misdemeanor, but could lead toto 2.5 years at the Indiana Department of Corrections.

The newest charge, Count 3 would add between 45 and 65 years in jail, with an advisory sentence of 55 years and up to a $10,000 fine.

Coleman fought back tears as Medlock explained the charges and the possible penalties. 

When asked if she understood everything, she whimpered, “Yes.”

Although the probably cause affidavit gave her address in Shreveport, Louisiana, she was arrested in San Francisco and told Judge Medlock she was currently homeless. 

She said she couldn’t afford an attorney so Medlock appointed Mark Clark. 

Her pre-trial conference was set for December 15 at 9a. Her trial was initially set for May 2, 2023 at 8:30a. 

Deputy Prosecutor Tara Coats Hunt asked for a motion regarding her bond and newly-appointed defense attorney Clark asked for any motions regarding the bond to be discussed at the December hearing. The Judge agreed.

Coleman was originally identified as a suspect over the summer when her fingerprints were found on a black trash bag the 5-year-old was wrapped in.

As a result of information gathered during their investigation, Indiana State Police Detective Matt Busick and ISP Detective Chris Tucker traveled to San Francisco, California.

On October 19, 2022, Detective Matt Busick located and arrested Dawn Coleman with the assistance of the San Francisco Police Department.

Based on information gathered during Detective Busick’s continuing investigation, on Tuesday, October 25, 2022, the Washington County Circuit Court issued an arrest warrant for Dejaune Ludie Anderson for the charge of Murder.  

She is still missing and has a warrant out for her arrest. if anyone spots her, please call 911 and alert police. 

Through lab identification of Anderson’s fingerprints and further investigation, it was discovered that the previously unidentified boy was in fact, her son, Cairo Ammar Jordan from Atlanta, Georgia.

He had previously been interred at the Crown Hill Cemetery in Salem and given the name “Angel.”

His father and family gathered for a memorial service in Salem at Southern Hills Church on Sunday, Nov. 6 and visited the gravesite shortly afterwards.