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2 held after officer-involved shooting in western MN accused of sex trafficking in Milwaukee

Domonique Crayton

CLAY COUNTY, Minnesota -- FOX6 News is learning more about two people from Milwaukee being held in connection with an officer-involved shooting in Clay County, Minnesota (near Fargo, ND) on Monday, March 5. Both are charged in connection with a February 2018 sex trafficking case out of Milwaukee.

Open court cases

The male suspect, Domonique Crayton, 29, has four open cases out of Milwaukee County, and two arrest warrants and two bench warrants have been issued for him. The female suspect, Melody Gray, 30, has one open case, with an arrest warrant filed in February.

Online court records show Gray was charged with misdemeanor bail jumping on Feb. 28, and an arrest warrant was issued on that date.

Two days earlier, on Feb. 26, he was charged with the following:

  • Kidnapping/carrying without consent, as party to a crime
  • Human trafficking
  • Second degree sexual assault/use of force
  • Possession of a firearm by a person convicted of a felony

An arrest warrant was issued on that date.

The third open case is from back in February 2017, when he was charged with misdemeanor bail jumping on Feb. 12. A bench warrant was issued on Aug. 16, 2017.

On May 7, 2016 he was charged with misdemeanor criminal damage to property and misdemeanor disorderly conduct -- with domestic abuse assessments. A bench warrant was issued on Aug. 16, 2017 in that case.

Melody Gray

February 2018 sex trafficking case

Both Crayton and Gray are charged in the February 2018 sex trafficking. Gray faces one count of kidnapping/carrying without consent, as party to a crime, one count of human trafficking and one count of possession of a firearm by a person convicted of a felony.

According to a criminal complaint, police on Feb. 21 spoke with a witness who indicated she had met Crayton three years ago, and he "asked her to engage in prostitution, which she agreed to do." She said Crayton took her to Chicago, Appleton and Sheboygan.

She told investigators Crayton "would beat her if she didn't make enough money." She said when she would "do prostitution dates for Crayton, he made her give him all of the money." She said she would try to conceal money but when Crayton would find it, he would beat her.

She indicated in June of 2017, Crayton and Gray began dating, and "he would have Gray beat her for him." She said Crayton began to get upset with her because he wanted her "to work out of town," and she refused to go. She said she was given an Amazon gift card, purchased by Crayton in order to post advertisements while out of town, but she said she instead "took the card and used it to post herself locally in Milwaukee" -- not telling Crayton.

She described an incident that happened on Feb. 20. According to the complaint, she said she was sitting in a vehicle with a friend near 28th and Locust when Crayton approached on foot with a black, semi-automatic handgun. Gray was with him. The woman said she was ordered out of the car at gunpoint and placed in Crayton's SUV. She said Crayton drove to 49th and Burleigh and asked her "why she betrayed him and why she is posting, but not giving him the money." She said as Crayton drove, Gray and another woman beat her.

The woman said they drove to W. Hampton, where she told investigators Crayton indicated "he was going to have Gray take her inside a building and shoot and kill her." Gray told the woman "I got my (expletive) whipped because of you," and the woman noticed Gray had a black eye.

Crayton then drove to 49th and Burleigh and Gray and the other woman left. The complaint says Crayton backed his SUV into a garage and closed the door. Sex acts then occurred, and the woman told investigators she was "crying and shaking." She said the gun was still in the vehicle. Afterwards, the complaint says Crayton told the woman "I should have you stay naked so I can advertise."

The woman indicated Crayton drove around, stopping to meet another girl he prostituted, who gave him money before he dropped her off at her mother's house. She said they were supposed to be going to Wausau, Sheboygan and Appleton for prostitution dates but never ended up going.

She said early the next morning, she convinced Crayton she had an appointment she needed to make, so he agreed to drop her off along with another woman near 6th and Walnut. She said when the other woman left, she went to law enforcement.

According to the complaint, the woman described an incident a month prior when there was an argument over drugs between Crayton and his "little cousin" near 21st and Fond du Lac. During the dispute, the woman reported Crayton indicated he "wouldn't shoot his cousin because he told his cousin's father he wouldn't." They then went to 53rd and North, where Crayton and Gray went into a home and came out with firearms. Then they went back to 21st and Fond du Lac, where Gray fired two rounds into a vehicle Crayton's cousin was in with a female and toddler in the back seat. They then drove away.

The complaint makes reference to a July 2013 conviction against Crayton for possession of THC, a felony offense that prohibits him from possessing a firearm.

Additionally, according to the complaint, back in 2005, he was convicted of possession with intent to deliver cocaine.

Minnesota officer-involved shooting

Minnesota officer-involved shooting

Charges are as follows:

Melody Gray

  • Attempted murder, first degree, peace officer, prosecuting attorney, judge or prison guard
  • Possession of ammo/any firearm, conviction or adjudicated delinquent for crime of violence
  • Receiving stolen property

Domonique Crayton

  • Damage to property, first degree, value reduced over $1,000
  • Receiving stolen property, felony
  • Give peace officer false name/birthdate/ID card
  • Obstruct legal process, lawful execution legal process

Domonique Crayton, Melody Gray

A criminal complaint indicates shortly after 10 a.m. on March 5, a trooper assiting a vehicle that slid off I-94 westbound due to winter storm conditions when he saw another vehicle slide off the road and into the median.

A second trooper said he would respond to that second vehicle.

"Trooper Peterson" arrived at the scene and activated his squad camera for video and audio. When he approached the vehicle, a male passenger exited. The trooper asked if everyone was OK and said he would get a tow truck. The driver, identified as Melody Gray, provided a false ID card, according to the complaint. The complaint says Crayton provided the name of Donald Lamont Echols.

The vehicle didn't have proper license plates, so the trooper ran the VIN number. As he was doing this, the complaint says the male passenger was walking around the car and seemed to be directing Gray to rock the vehicle in an effort to get it out of the ditch. When those efforts were unsuccessful, he sat down in the vehicle.

Minnesota officer-involved shooting

Trooper Peterson learned the vehicle, a black 2008 Chevy Trailblazer had been reported stolen out of Wisconsin -- taken from a home in Germantown on Jan 2. As the trooper was attempting to handcuff the male, the complaint says Gray held a 9mm handgun to the trooper's head and appeared to pull the trigger, but the gun didn't discharge. The trooper pulled himself and the male away as Gray attempted to chamber a bullet. That's when the trooper fired his department-issued handgun, striking Gray in the right arm. She then dropped the gun and ran into a field.

She was taken into custody and the gun was recovered.

Crayton was also arrested. The complaint says he physically resisted efforts to handcuff him and kicked out the windows in the squad.

It was learned Gray had an active warrant for her arrest out of Wisconsin in the sex trafficking case, and a review of her criminal history revealed convictions for possession with intent to deliver cocaine and felony possession of marijuana.

Officer-involved shooting incident in Clay County, MN

Trooper Peterson was not injured. The shooting incident was captured on squad video.

As for that stolen vehicle, Germantown police said they believe it may have changed hands several times in the two months before it was discovered in Minnesota.

"Very concerning. This is a matter our investigator is taking very seriously. It is concerning. Certainly stolen vehicles in this community continue to be on the rise in the Milwaukee area in general," said Captain Mike Snow with the Germantown Police Department.