Coroner releases name of York City boy shot in SUV

Liz Evans Scolforo
York Dispatch
Family and friends hold a balloon release at the corner of East Philadelphia Street and North Pine Street for Elias Dowlatram, the five-year-old boy who died from an accidental shooting, Tuesday, August 20.
Wednesday, August 21, 2019.
John A. Pavoncello photo

A 5-year-old child fatally shot in the head Tuesday afternoon was one of two children who had access to a gun inside an SUV, according to York City Police.

York County Coroner Pam Gay identified the child as Elias Dowlatram, of the 200 block of East Philadelphia Street.

An autopsy Wednesday, Aug. 21, confirmed he died of a gunshot wound to the head, according to Gay.

However, the manner of the boy's death remains under investigation. Manners of death are homicide, suicide, accidental, medical, natural causes or undetermined.

The man who was supposed to be caring for the children is now locked up without bail, charged with two counts of child endangerment and one count each of cocaine possession with intent to deliver and being a convicted felon in illegal possession of a firearm.

Adrian Moye

Adrian Moye, 27, of the 800 block of Wallace Street, was denied bail when he was arraigned on the felony charges Wednesday in the county's central booking unit, according to court records.

'Danger to society': Duty District Judge Jeffrey Oberdorf, in denying bail, noted he believes Moye is a danger to society, court records state.

City Detective Kyle Hower wrote in charging documents that Moye is a repeat convicted drug dealer, meaning he's a felon who is prohibited from possessing guns.

Moye is the boyfriend of the child's mother, according to York City Police spokesman Derek Hartman.

According to charging documents, Elias and a 7-year-old boy were in the back of an SUV that Moye drove to the 200 block of East Philadelphia Street shortly after 2 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 20.

Surveillance footage shows that Moye parked in the block at 2:08 p.m. and less than a minute later, carried the "lifeless child" to the front porch of a home there, as a 7-year-old boy walked along with Moye, charging documents state.

That's the home where Elias lived, police confirmed.

Wasted minutes: Moye laid Elias on the porch and walked back to the SUV, followed by the 7-year-old, according to documents.

Moye and the older child then walked back to the porch, where Moye picked up Elias and went inside the home, but he quickly walked back outside still carrying the mortally wounded boy, charging documents state.

Moye then walked a few yards up the street before returning to the SUV, putting Elias back inside and driving away at 2:13 p.m., according to documents.

Candles have been placed in the 200 block of East Philadelphia Street in remembrance of 5-year-old Elias Dowlataram, who was fatally shot in the head while he and a 7-year-old had a gun, according to York City Police.
(John A. Pavoncello photo)

Police have said Elias was taken to York Hospital in a private vehicle.

He was pronounced dead at the hospital at 2:31 p.m., according to the coroner's office.

At the scene Tuesday, a York City firefighter treated a boy for a cut above his eye. The boy appeared to be about 7 years old.

Charging documents state that a witness overheard Moye telling Elias' mother that the boys had the gun when Elias was shot.

Those documents don't indicate whether the delay in getting the boy medical attention factored into his death.

The boys are related, Hartman confirmed.

York City Mayor Michael Helfrich said it's unclear who fired the gun.

Moye told police he parked in the block and walked up to a home there and that when he came back to the SUV, Elias was unconscious and there was blood everywhere, documents state. But police said surveillance video shows that's not the case.

Investigators at this point believe Elias was shot in the SUV, according to Hartman.

Gun, cocaine seized: Police executed a search warrant at the home of Elias' family, where they found and seized a loaded 9 mm handgun, along with crack cocaine and powdered cocaine, charging documents state.

Five-year-old Elias Dowlataram was fatally shot in the head while he and a 7-year-old had a gun, according to York City Police, who said Adrian Moye carried the "lifeless" child from an SUV to a porch in the 200 block of East Philadelphia Street on Aug. 20, 2019.
(John A. Pavoncello photo)

Documents state the cocaine was packaged to be sold.

The gun was found outside the home but still on the property that the search warrant covered, according to Hartman, who said investigators believe Moye hid the gun while there.

Hartman said officers are still working to determine the owner of the gun, since Moye as a felon could not have purchased it legally.

Long rap sheet: Moye pleaded guilty to dealing drugs in four separate York County criminal cases between 2010 and 2015, and he pleaded guilty in a fifth case to conspiracy to deal drugs, according to court records. All the cases are felonies.

He pleaded guilty in 2013 to fleeing or attempting to elude police and, in a separate case, pleaded guilty to the felony of flight to avoid apprehension, records state.

In 2010 he pleaded guilty to possession of a controlled substance.

It is unclear whether Moye has retained an attorney on his new charges.

Anyone with information on the shooting of Elias Dowlatram is asked to call York City Police at 717-846-1234 or text "Yorktips" and your information to 847-411.

— Reach Liz Evans Scolforo at or on Twitter at @LizScolforoYD.