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Complaint: Racine man shot son’s mom’s boyfriend over reports he was ‘heavy-handed’ with child

Morris Martin

Morris Martin

RACINE — Charges were filed Sunday, Feb. 23 against a Racine man prosecutors said shot his son’s mother’s boyfriend in the groin following reports the man was “heavy-handed” with his son. He was out on bond at the time, according to prosecutors, and showed up at the home of his girlfriend and the victim with his mother and father in tow.

Morris Martin, 20, faces two counts of attempted first-degree intentional homicide, use of a dangerous weapon, and five counts of felony bail jumping.

The shooting happened on Jan. 2 around 6 p.m. in the area near Anthony Lane and William Street — where police found the victim with a gunshot wound to his groin.

A criminal complaint said Martin’s sister told Martin the victim had been “heavy-handed” with his child, and Martin phoned the child’s mother “extremely agitated.” The victim’s girlfriend said Martin told her, “I have some (expletive) for you, and some (expletive) for your boyfriend.” Martin said he was on his way, presumably to fight, which he was known to do, the woman told investigators. The complaint said she called a friend and neighbor to come over because she was worried since Martin is “known to fight,” and “often armed.” She said Martin soon called and told her to come outside with her boyfriend — and a vehicle they didn’t recognize pulled up. The complaint said Martin’s mother was driving, and his father was the front passenger. Martin was in the back with another male.

At this point, the complaint said Martin’s mother ran up to the victim and began arguing with him about the treatment of the child. The victim said Morris’ mother said, “You hit my grandson,” before attacking him — punching him in the mouth. He yelled and backed up, telling the woman, “I’m not gonna hit you. I’m not that kind of person. I don’t hit females,” telling Martin to, “Come get your mom” — before Martin pulled a gun. The victim’s girlfriend said, fearing for her safety, she yelled at Martin to, “Stop, Mo, why are you doing this?” Prosecutors said Martin then pointed a gun at the victim’s groin, telling him, “You’ll learn your lesson.” He then fired from about three feet away. The victim and his girlfriend said they heard three more shots as they ran, before Martin and his parents fled.

The victim told investigators someone told Martin the victim had been physical with Martin’s son, but the victim said he never had been, indicating, “It’s not his child, so it’s not his place to physically discipline him.”

The neighbor said he didn’t want anyone hurt, so he stopped by that day. He said after the Martin family showed up, Martin’s mother was swinging at the victim, and Martin went around her — shooting the victim — firing two more times as they all ran. The victim said after firing at them, Martin turned his attention to the neighbor, firing at him.

Investigators took a look at Facebook messages and texts from Martin and family — threatening the mother of his child, and attempting to dispel the fact that Maritn had shot the victim, the complaint said.

Online court records showed Martin was out on bond in a case filed in March 2019 charging him with possession with intent to deliver THC (less than 200 grams), second and subsequent offense, resisting or obstructing an officer, repeater, and carrying a concealed weapon, repeater — and failed to appear in court in that case in December. Cash bond was forfeited days after the shooting, on Jan. 7.

Martin made a “return on warrant” initial court appearance in the shooting case on Monday, Feb. 24.

Cash bond was set at $25,000. A preliminary hearing was scheduled for March 5.

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