A Baltimore police officer has been arrested after allegedly fighting with law enforcement who discovered the body of his 15-year-old stepson hidden inside a hole in a wall.
Eric Banks, 34, was taken into custody after allegedly assaulting an Anne Arundel County police officer and attempting to take their handgun, after officers responded to an address at 1400 block of Stoney Point Way, Curtis Bay, Maryland to conduct a welfare check on the teenager.
Anne Arundel County Police said they received a call at 4:56 p.m. on July 6 from a complainant regarding a child custody dispute. Police said a mother was in the area to pick up her teenage son—identified in court documents as 15-year-old boy Dasan Jones—who had been with Banks.
After initially telling responding officers that the teenager wasn’t at home, he agreed to a search of the house, reported The Baltimore Sun.
When police reached the loft, they said they saw a hole in the wall with a white cover leaning on it. Banks told officers that the space was his gun safe.
Officers then found the body of Jones and immediately began rendering aid on the boy. During this time, Anne Arundel County Police said Banks “became combative” and tried to disarm an officer.
According to court documents, Banks asked to be allowed to kiss his kids as he was placed in handcuffs and taken into custody, before trying to remove a handgun from an officer’s holster.
“Mr. Banks stated multiple times ‘you’re gonna have to end this’ as we were wrestling over the firearm,” the officer wrote in the charging documents seen by The Baltimore Sun.
Banks was eventually charged with First and Second Degree Assault, Reckless Endangerment, Disarm a Law Officer, Resist/Interfere with Arrest, and Fail to Obey a Lawful order.
Police are treating the 15-year-old’s death “suspicious” but have not suggested how he died or if there was any foul play.
An autopsy to reveal the cause of Jones’ death is pending.
“There appeared to be some things going on with the couple and there needed to be some space between them,” an Anne Arundel County Police spokesperson told WJZ.
During a bail review hearing, Assistant State’s Attorney Jason Miller said Banks admitted moving his stepson’s body while also making statements suggesting that he is homicidal and suicidal.
“He admits to officers that he moved his son’s body from one location in the home, and secreted it in another,” Miller said during the hearing. “He has shown that he is not afraid to resort to violence.”
Anne Arundel County District Court Judge Danielle Mosley denied bond for Banks, saying he is a potential flight risk and could cause harm to himself and others.
Banks had already had his police powers suspended over a prior incident. After he was charged, the 34-year-old has now been suspended without pay.
“I’m not privileged to comment [on the] previous incident,” Baltimore Police Commissioner Michael Harrison told WJZ.
Baltimore Police have been contacted for further comment.