Suspect’s Cousin Describes How Latrice Maze Was Killed

Posted at 11:39 AM, May 22, 2013
and last updated 2013-05-22 13:04:41-04

Greg Shanklin

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — A witness told a court Wednesday that Jahleel Hoskins described to him how he choked Latrice Maze and dumped her body in a dumpster.

Jahleel Hoskins is charged with open murder and tampering with evidence, and he appeared in court for the first day of his preliminary hearing. The tampering with evidence charge arises from the disposal of Maze’s body, which has never been found. The Grand Rapids mother of five disappeared late March when she failed to pick up her kids from school.

The compelling testimony came from Hoskins’ cousin, Greg Shanklin.  Shanklin took the stand dressed in the same blue jumpsuit his cousin was wearing. Shanklin is in jail for lying in court about Maze’s disappearance. Wednesday, he appeared to reluctantly come clean, looking and sounding troubled as he told the court in detail what happened the night Maze was murdered.

According to Shanklin, Hoskins was worried his relationship with Maze would affect his parole status. This stemmed from a bar fight February 18 at the Elks Club. Witnesses told the court that Hoskins that night stabbed Kenneth Harris, the father of two of Maze’s children. Harris survived.

Shanklin told the court that Hoskins first got the idea to kill Maze after police were called to their home March 19 on reports of a domestic fight.

Shanklin alleged that Hoskins told him how he choked Maze, wrapped her in her daughter’s bed sheet, and dumped her body in a dumpster at Peppercorn Apartments.