3 missing Dodge County people have been found dead. Law enforcement says the missing person case is over and it is now officially a murder investigation.
The Georgia Bureau of Investigation says all 3 people who went missing are dead and two men are in custody, one charged with murder. For one Dodge County woman, it's just the latest tragic update.
Down a long country road in Chauncey sits a small white house tucked down an even smaller country lane. It's where we spoke to Sue Tootle Thursday afternoon.
"It's very abnormal. That's not like my children -- I don't go a day without talking to Mercedes hardly," said Tootle. She says her 17-year-old daughter Mercedes Hackle, Mercedes' big brother Ronnie Hackle, and his fiance Bobbie Lynn Moore called this place home. But days earlier, Dodge County Sheriff Lynn Sheffield says they'd gone missing on Tuesday.
"It's bad for the family," Sheffield said.
Around the same time, deputies more than 60 miles away in Berrien County found Moore's car on fire near a river. The search picked up, and now, GBI now says all three were found dead.
"It bothers everybody, no matter how long we've been in law enforcement or how short we've been in law enforcement -- every loss bothers you," said Sheffield.
For Tootle, when we spoke to her before the GBI announced they'd located the bodies, she was already dreading this possibility. "I literally fell down in my yard to my knees and I broke down, and I sat there and cried and cried and cried," Tootle said Thursday.
Two men are now in custody. Jonathan Vann and Kayante Green are under arrest in connection to the deaths. Vann is facing three counts of murder, while Green is facing 3 charges for concealing a death. The GBI also charged Vann with arson for allegedly burning the car in Berrien County.