Georgia dad charged in connection with deaths of his 2 children found buried in backyard worked as Walmart Santa

A Georgia father charged in connection with the deaths of his two children reportedly worked as a Santa at a local Walmart in the days leading up to his arrest.

Elwyn Crocker, 50, who was charged with child cruelty and concealing a death in connection with his killings of his children, was working as Santa Claus at the store in Rincon, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.

“This guy, the biological father, was a Santa Claus at Rincon Walmart, and these other families who live out here had their kids in his lap,” Ronald Howe, a neighbor, told WTOC.

From left to right: Kim Wright, Candice Crocker and Roy Prater were charged with child cruelty and concealing a death.

From left to right: Kim Wright, Candice Crocker and Roy Prater were charged with child cruelty and concealing a death. (Effingham County Sheriff's Office)

Officials investigating the disappearance of Mary Crocker, 14, searched the property in Guyton where the girl had lived and discovered two bodies. Autopsies confirmed that one of the bodies was Mary’s while the other body discovered was of her brother Elwyn Crocker Jr., who had not been seen since November 2016.

Stepmother Candice Crocker, 33, Kim Wright, 50, and Wright’s boyfriend, Roy Anthony Prater, 55, were also charged with child cruelty and concealing a death in connection to the children’s killings. They all lived in the same house with Elwyn Crocker.

They were being held in Effingham County Jail without bond. More charges were expected.

Mary Crocker, 14, left, and her brother Elwyn Jr., who was 14 when he vanished in November 2016.

Mary Crocker, 14, left, and her brother Elwyn Jr., who was 14 when he vanished in November 2016. (Effingham County Sheriff’s Office)

Gena Sullivan, Effingham County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman, said deputies were only called to the residence “for complaints about a couple of pit bulls” but learned later that the family was reported to the Division of Family and Children Services. The children were enrolled in school in the county but were pulled out for homeschooling, WTOC reported.

The news of the death shocked the small town of fewer than 2,000 people.

“I’ve been doing this 41 years and, a while ago, I almost broke down in tears. It’s that bad,” Sheriff Jimmy McDuffie said. “I don’t understand how you do children like this.”

Fox News’ Paulina Dedaj and the Associated Press contributed to this report.

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