Pregnant woman who was kidnapped, set on fire and shot gives birth to baby boy; two charged in case

Two men arraigned in case including father of baby

WARREN, Mich. (WXYZ) - Two men, both 22, have been arraigned in Warren in connection with the vicious attack on a pregnant woman.

Jamal Rogers, the father of the child, and his roommate Antonio Mathis, are charged in the crime. Both men have criminal records.

Charges include assault with intent to commit murder. Both men could spend the rest of their lives in prison if convicted.

Investigators say the plan was hatched in March when Rogers learned Latonya Bowman was pregnant with his third child.

Police say it does not appear Rogers offered Mathis any money to commit the crime.

Mathis can be seen on security camera video at a Home Depot in Warren buying duct tape, a rope and gloves the night before the crime, according to police.

Police also say Rogers sent text messages to Bowman while the crime was taking place to try to establish an alibi.

The victim, who survived being kidnapped, set on fire and shot, gave birth to a baby boy Tuesday morning.  She was due in three weeks but had an emergency c-section.

Warren Police say the 22-year-old victim was attacked Saturday morning.   

The victim told police she and her ex-boyfriend had just returned from a drive-in movie in Dearborn when she dropped him off at a home on Sherman Street in Warren. Rogers lives there with his mother, current girlfriend and Mathis.

Bowman says she and Rogers pulled into the garage and then got out of the car. The garage door then suddenly closed.

"The next thing she knew she was grabbed by the throat and a gun was put to her head," said Warren Police Commissioner Jere Green. "She was ordered to the ground."

Green says duct tape was placed on her mouth, eyes, and wrapped around her hands and feet.

The suspect then drove her around in her Saturn Vue for about ten minutes before stopping in an alley in Detroit. That was near I-94 and I-75.

Then the man said two things.

"He said 'you know why this is happening' and then he asked her about how far along she was," says Commissioner Green.

The woman, who was nine months pregnant, says she felt liquid poured on her, then heard a match strike and then she was on fire.

"She was able to get out of the car and start rolling on the ground, trying to put the fire out," Green says. "And when that happened, two shots were fired and she was struck once in the back."

She played dead, and the man took off.

She was able to free herself from the duct tape and then drove away. She called her mother from a gas station and then drove to her mother's home on Detroit's east side. Her mother then took her to Royal Oak Beaumont Hospital. She was later transferred to Detroit Receiving.

Later in the morning, police took her ex-boyfriend into custody for questioning.

Police say he is a person of interest because he did nothing to help and did not call 911. He tells police he was sleeping and did not see the attack.

Neighbors say they often see very nice cars and a lot of traffic at the Sherman Street house where the woman was abducted.

Warren police could be seen Saturday morning taking fingerprints and photos of charcoal starter fluid in the garage.

They also dusted the woman's Saturn Vue for fingerprints.

7 Action News has learned that one day after the woman had a baby shower earlier in May, a suspect showed up at her mother's house and pointed a gun at her. The mother slammed the door and he left.

The victim is recovering from burns to her back and head.

Police say the bullet wound to her back did not do any serious damage.

The mother of one of the suspects told 7 Action News Reporter Cheryl Chodun she cannot believe her son could be involved. Her son is the father of the unborn baby.

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