Hazelwood gets life in prison without parole for killing two teens in Roswell

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Hazelwood gets life in prison without parole for killing two teens in Roswell

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David Barnes/DAVID BARNES / SPECIAL
May 17, 2017, Atlanta - Jeffrey Hazelwood, right, is brought into court before a sentencing in Atlanta, Georgia, on Wednesday, May 17, 2017. Hazelwood plans to plead guilty to all charges involving the murder of Carter Davis and Natalie Henderson, (DAVID BARNES / DAVID.BARNES@AJC.COM)

The man who shot and killed two teenagers behind a Roswell grocery store in August pleaded guilty but mentally ill to murder charges Wednesday.

Jeffrey Andrew Hazelwood was sentenced to life without parole. He spoke very little, but through his attorney, Hazelwood said he was remorseful.

Hazelwood, 20, shot and killed Natalie Henderson and Carter Davis behind the King Plaza Publix in the early-morning hours of Aug. 1.

Hours later, a delivery driver found the teenagers’ bodies and called police. 

Surveillance cameras captured images of Hazelwood, who at the time had shoulder-length hair, and the SUV he was driving.

A psychologist said Jeffrey Hazelwood still hears voices, but his meds allow him to control them. The court is taking steps to ensure he does not suffer a mental breakdown.

Within 48 hours, Hazelwood was arrested and charged with killing the teenagers, who had apparently met behind the grocery store for a romantic tryst.

Hazelwood, who was first diagnosed with mental illness as a child, had been prescribed anti-psychotic medication, a doctor testified at his competency hearing. 

The two teens were each shot in the head and their bodies posed behind a Roswell Publix. (Family photos) The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

But Hazelwood later admitted he hadn’t been taking his medication when he killed Natalie and Carter. 

While in the Fulton County jail, Hazelwood was not given the proper medication, he and his attorneys told the judge at two hearings. In February, he was moved to Central State Hospital in Milledgeville, where he has continued to receive treatment.

Both Natalie and Carter’s mothers spoke in court prior to the sentencing, with each reading emotional statements words about the outgoing, caring teens. Judge Shawn LaGrua then spoke to both families directly, reminding them that neither Natalie nor Carter will soon be forgotten.

“This case will have a lasting impact on many different issues and causes,” LaGrua said. 

May 17, 2017, Atlanta - Jeffrey Hazelwood, center, looks to his attorneys before pleading guilty during a sentencing in Atlanta, Georgia, on Wednesday, May 17, 2017. Hazelwood plans to plead guilty to all charges involving the murder of Carter Davis and Natalie Henderson, (DAVID BARNES / DAVID.BARNES@AJC.COM) David Barnes/DAVID BARNES / SPECIAL
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