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Body found in car trunk ID'd as Newton Co. man

Body found in car trunk ID'd as Newton Co. man

COVINGTON, Ga. (AP) - A body found in the trunk of a burning car in Atlanta has been identified as a missing Newton County man.

The Fulton County Medical Examiner's office said 49-year-old Gregory Vernon Harris died from being smothered. His death has been ruled a homicide.

The Rockdale Citizen reports that the car was discovered July 14 in the backyard of a vacant house. Investigators said the Infiniti was registered to Harris, who had been reported missing by the Newton County Sheriff's office a day earlier.

Harris' sister had alerted local authorities because the family was unable to reach her brother. Authorities said that the sister went to check on her brother at his home. She reported that his belongings at the residence seemed out of place and disturbed.

Man arrested for public indecency at library

Man arrested for public indecency at library

COVINGTON, Ga. -- Covington Police arrested a man for public indecency at the Covington Library Wednesday.

Eric Dioniss Spearman, 52, was taken into custody after trying to run away from approaching officers. He was caught in a wooded area behind the library.

"We have been actively working two investigations of public indecency involving a person matching Spearman's description ... we are confident that this individual was the perpetrator of these incidents as well," Covington Police Capt. Ken Malcom said in a statement.

Spearman was charged with three felony counts of public indecency. He is being held in the Newton County Detention Center.

Malcom said that Spearman has been charged with at least 14 similar crimes in the past.

4 charged in Covington man's death

4 charged in Covington man's death

COVINGTON, Ga. -- Four young men have been charged in the Sept. 3 death of a Covington resident.

Police were dispatched to 5187 West Street in Covington around 11:50 p.m. Saturday, where they found 59-year-old Fred Layne Beeler on the couch in the living room. Beeler had been struck in the head multiple times, police said.

The victim was flown to a hospital in Atlanta, where he was pronounced dead around 4:30 a.m.

Employees treated after exposure to white powder

Employees treated after exposure to white powder

COVINGTON, Ga. -- About 10 employees of a Covington cell phone business were treated after one of them opened a package containing white powder.

Covington Police Capt. Craig Treadwell said workers at PureTalk, which refurbishes cell phones, reported burning eyes and skin irritation after their colleague opened a box of batteries that contained a note stating an intent to harm someone.

Authorities said the batteries had been fused together, and the white power was released when the employee pulled them apart at about 2:30 a.m. That worker later complained of hand numbness.

A decontamination unit was set up at Newton Medical Center to treat the employees.

Police notified the FBI and Department of Homeland Security of the incident.

Police seek Social Circle bank robber

Police seek Social Circle bank robber

SOCIAL CIRCLE, Ga. -- The FBI and the GBI, in conjunction with the Social Circle Police Department, are looking for the man who robbed a bank this morning.

The incident happened around 9:45 a.m. at the Pinnacle Bank on North Cherokee Road.

According to investigators, a man handed the teller a note, that said he had a gun. He demanded cash; after receiving it, he ran from the bank.

The suspect is described as a black man in his mid-20s, about 6' or 6'1" tall and with a slender build.

Anyone who can identify the suspect is asked to call the Social Circle Police Department at 770-464-2366 or the GBI Tip Line at 1-800-597-8477.

Body Found off Crowell Road

Body Found off Crowell Road

COVINGTON, Ga. – On Sunday night, a male body was discovered in a wooded area near Crowell Road in Covington.

According to Lt. Mark Mitchell, the body was discovered by a citizen, in the area, doing research work and looking for Civil War artifacts.

As of now, the GBI and the Newton County Sherriff’s Office is treating this as a death investigation and not a homicide, as there is no indication of foul play.

The sheriff’s department is in the process of notifying the body’s next-of-kin after which they will release the person’s name.  

No other information is available, at this time.

Body found Sunday in wooded area off Crowell Road

COVINGTON — The Newton County Sheriff’s Office is conducting what they are calling a “death investigation” following the discovery of a body in a wooded area off Crowell Road near McDonald’s restaurant around 7:15 p.m. Sunday.