Three charged in Elbert County murder
Courtesy of WSGC Elbert County Sheriff Melvin Andrews has announced the arrests of three individuals who have been charged in connection with the shooting death of an 86-year-old Elbert County man.
William David Peterson, 19, of an Athens address and Savanna Marie Jennings, 19, of a Pearl Mill Road address in Elbert County were both charged Wednesday with murder, felony murder, malice murder, possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime, aggravated assault and concealing the death of another. Peterson is additionally charged with possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.
A third suspect, Dakota Scott Street, 18, of an Elbert County address, is charged with concealing the death of another.
The victim, Otha Perrin, who died of multiple gunshot wounds, was Jennings’ grandfather and also lived at the Pearl Mill Road residence.
Sheriff’s officers said Jennings came to the Elbert County Detention Center on Sunday morning to report that her grandfather was missing. On Monday, another family member came to the Sheriff’s Office and said that “something isn’t right” about the missing person’s case.
During further questioning, investigators said Jennings eventually broke down and admitted she had been deceitful in her answers. The body was recovered Monday from a pond on private farm property off Wahatchee Creek Road.
Officers also recovered a .22 caliber rifle on the farm property near the pond where Perrin’s body was recovered. Peterson, Jennings and Street had a first appearance hearing on Wednesday afternoon in front of Elbert County Chief Magistrate judge Lanie Simmons where bond was denied for Petersen and Jennings. Bond was set at a $25,000 property bond for Street.
Peterson and Jennings bond request is being held over to superior court and will be heard by Chief Judge Thomas L. Hodges. All three remain in the Elbert County Detention Center at this time.
Sheriff Andrews said the case remains under investigation by his office, the Elbert County Coroner’s Office and the Northern Judicial Circuit District Attorney’s Office. He credited the Elbert County Emergency Management Agency, EMS and Dive Team, along with the Athens-Clarke County Police Department and the State Probation Office for their assistance in the investigation.