- Steve Burns The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
A toddler, a woman and a man were found shot to death early Thursday in the small Middle Georgia town of Byromville, the GBI said.
The toddler and the woman were discovered in their front yard about 4 a.m., GBI spokesman J.T. Ricketson told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
The toddler, identified as Jashun Ingram, was 17 months old, Channel 2 Action News reported.
The woman was 47 years old, according to Ricketson. She was identified as Priscilla Adams, Deputy Coroner Ricky Hudson told WMAZ-TV of Macon.
Adams was the toddler’s caretaker and they were not related, Ricketson told WGXA-TV of Macon.
A 17-year-old girl was alongside the dead bodies, according to officials. She was taken to a Macon hospital in critical condition and came out of surgery about 11:30 a.m., Ricketson told WGXA. A GBI agent has been assigned to monitor the girl as well as to interview her about the incident, according to the news station.
More than 4½ hours after the bodies of the toddler and woman were located, police dogs found a 60-year-old man dead across the street, authorities said. He was identified as Willie Merrell, according to Hudson.
All the deaths are believed to be related, WGXA reported.
“Whoever did this, they need to pay,” Bessie Ingram, the toddler’s grandmother, told Channel 2.
Ricketson said authorities have a weapon that was found by Merrell, Channel 2 reported. He told WGXA that "around seven people" live in the Hill Street home where the incident occurred. The 911 call came from someone who lived at that home.
Ricketson said the incident is classified as a death investigation, but “we’re working it like a homicide all the way around.”
As many as 12 GBI agents and 25 Dooly County sheriff’s investigators are canvassing the area to try to piece together what happened.
“Our crime scene started expanding on us,” Ricketson said.
It will likely take several hours to sort everything out, he said.
Asked if officials were seeking one suspect, Ricketson said authorities were “still working on that.”
Byromville, population 500, is in Dooly County, about 130 miles south of downtown Atlanta.
“It’s a very small town,” Ricketson said. “A quiet community.”
Dooly County had one homicide in all of 2017, WGXA reported.
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