‘Breakdown’ S04, Ep. 0: Murder Below the Gnat Line

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The night manager of the Taco Bell in Adel, Ga., was shot through the right eye as she carried the night’s proceeds to her car in the restaurant’s parking lot.

There wasn’t much physical evidence in the case. But key witnesses came forward to point the finger at a young man who had just recently arrived in Adel from California. That man, Devonia Inman, was found guilty of first-degree murder.

Twenty years later, however, important aspects of the case have changed. A Georgia State University law professor believes Inman is innocent and is determined to prove he had nothing to do with the murder.

Here’s a quick preview of the coming season, which launches early on Monday. This season’s title, Below the Gnat Line, refers to a region of Georgia south of a certain line where swarming gnats make life miserable for everybody. Adel is in the middle of gnat country.

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The Devonia Inman Case

The story of Devonia Inman’s conviction in South Georgia was spotlighted in an Atlanta Journal-Constitution Breakdown podcast, “Murder Below the Gnat Line.” The 2017 podcast asked, “Is the wrong man in prison?”

He was sentenced to life in prison without parole for a 1998 murder. The victim, the night manager of the Taco Bell in Adel, Ga., was shot through the right eye as she carried the night’s proceeds to her car in the restaurant’s parking lot.

Here are some links to our continuing coverage

Intro: What happened to put Devonia Inman in prison?

December 2021: Devonia Inman freed after 23 years in prison for wrongful conviction

2021: Devonia Inman, behind bars for 23 years, was wrongfully convicted, judge says

2019: Georgia Supreme Court justices question imprisoned man’s conviction

2017: “Murder Below the Gnat Line,” Listen to Season 4 of the AJC’s “Breakdown” podcast

Learn more about the AJC Breakdown podcast

RELATED: What is the Georgia Innocence Project?