Authorities in Georgia, USA, said on Wednesday (21 September) that there’s no evidence Debbie Collier – whose body was found earlier this month in woodland – was kidnapped.
Collier, 59, was found naked and partially burned on 11 September, a day after her daughter and husband reported her missing.
Both became concerned after Collier sent an eerie text message and transferred her daughter $2,400 via Venmo.
Collier’s message to her daughter read: “They are not going to let me go love you there is a key to the house in the blue flower pot by the door.”
Collier was said to be found the next day, positioned on her back with her hand grasping a small tree, and the missing person case shifted to a homicide investigation.
Although Collier’s message hinted she might have been being held against her will, NBC reports that police have confirmed there is no evidence to suggest this. Nor is there evidence linking Collier’s death to suicide.
An incident report seen by the outlet said Collier was found around an hour from her home in woodland off the side of the road.
Her body was found shortly after Habersham County authorities found Collier's van, which by this point was linked to a missing person report, on the side of a road in Clarkesville.
An officer from another department told a Habersham County officer that they’d seen the van parked in the same spot a day prior.
The vehicle was empty and unlocked when it was discovered.
A K-9 search soon took place, leading officers to a red tote bag lying on its side near an uprooted tree. Nearby, officers spotted what looked like the remains of a fire and partially burned blue tarp.
Authorities have confirmed that the body found over the weekend in Habersham County is that of Debbie Collier. Family members reported the 59-year-old Athens woman missing on September 10. Her body was found less than 24 hours later. https://t.co/IIQyem6vrr via @nowhabersham pic.twitter.com/Bb3xupqiq5— Now Habersham (@nowhabersham) September 13, 2022
Collier’s naked, partially burned body was discovered not far from the site, and NBC notes that an autopsy has since been conducted by a state crime lab.
Investigators have started speaking to people close to Collier and authorities executed search warrants at locations tied to her.
On 13 September, local news outlet Now Habersham announced the news in a tweet that read: “Authorities have confirmed that the body found over the weekend in Habersham County is that of Debbie Collier. Family members reported the 59-year-old Athens woman missing on September 10. Her body was found less than 24 hours later.”
UNILAD has contacted the Habersham County Sheriff's Office for further comment.
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