Arrested High School Football Player's Family Speaks Out

Disbelief and confusion from the family of a star high school athlete, accused of robbing a couple at gunpoint.   On Monday, Smith County Constable's arrested 17-year-old DeMarcus Martin of Lindale. He's charged with felony aggravated robbery, which carries a possible life prison sentence. DeMarcus allegedly committed the crime with his older brother Willie Martin who was also arrested.

DeMarcus Martin's family says he was a good student with high goals in life, attending church every week.   A junior at Lindale High School, DeMarcus started at linebacker and safety for the football team last fall.

"Football was like his girlfriend, his wife," said Terrell Martin, DeMarcus' brother. "If he could marry football he would do it."

"He wanted to get a scholarship and go to school," said Mary Martin, DeMarcus' mother. "He had one school, I can't think of the name, that was looking at him." That dream could now be over. Smith County Constables say DeMarcus turned himself in Monday, admitting to breaking into a Lindale home with a gun and robbing a couple of $200.00.

"He's honest," said Mary Martin. "If he did something he will tell you that he'd done it." With so much ahead of him, his family struggles with one question, why?.

"I have no idea," said Mary Martin. "It's just a shock, still in shock you know, I mean it's hard to even think about it."

"I refuse to believe it," said Toya Martin, DeMarcus' sister. "Not DeMarcus. I don't understand."  Mary Martin is a single parent. She says Willie, DeMarcus' older brother has been in trouble before, but not DeMarcus.

"I told him, DeMarcus I love you," said Mary Martin. "I said you know I'm behind you, and I said you didn't have to do that because I was out there working for you, taking care of you." Mary says she wants other kids to hear her son's story and make the right decision.

"Don't let peer pressure get to you whether it's brother, friend whatever," said Mary Martin. "I mean think before you act. Think about what it's going to do to your parents.  Just don't do it. It's not worth it." Mary says DeMarcus was going to be the first out of her four sons to graduate from high school. Both DeMarcus and Willie Martin remain in the Smith County jail tonight.

Molly Reuter, reporting. mreuter@kltv.com