Dad charged in murder of son, boy's grandmother in Huntsville


Howard Wayne Lewis, 46, was escorted into the Walker County Jail Wednesday afternoon.

It's been three months since relative Donea Kimbrough last saw the happy grandmother and her lively 18-month-old grandson.

"Sweet, joyful, someone's son, had a mother who loved him, grandmother, grandfather that loved him," Kimbrough said.

Shanta Crawford, 55, and her grandson 18-month-old Aiyden Lewis were both murdered inside this rural Huntsville home in July.

It was a day neighbors will never forget.

"Why would the father or anyone take the life of their own child. There had to be something wrong with them," neighbor Myra Crooks said.

Walker County Sheriff Clint McRae says the grandmother was beaten to death, and the grandson she was caring for was asphixiated.

"It has been determined that Lewis' DNA was found on an unnamed article which was left behind at the crime scene, which we feel directly ties Lewis to the homicide," McRae said.

On Wednesday, the boy's father, Howard Lewis, was charged with their murders.

It startled the neighborhood so badly some added security systems.

"There was fear, there was worry," Crooks said.

While they can rest a little easier now, the family is still in so much pain.

"Crazy he was taken away the way he was, but God's got us and he's got them too," Kimbrough said.

A motive for the murders has not yet been determined, though we know he was involved in a custody battle with the child's mother.

Authorities say Lewis was a prison guard for the Texas Department of Criminal Justice at one point and lives with his fiancee in the Dallas area.

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