The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

Texas A&M utility Gavin Grahovac (9) throws the ball during A&Ms game against Georgia on Friday, April 26, 2024, at Olsen Field. (CJ Smith/The Battalion)
Southern slugfest
May 23, 2024
Texas A&M pitcher Evan Aschenbeck (53) reacts after throwing the final strike out during Texas A&M’s game against Mississippi State on Saturday, March 23, 2024, at Olsen Field. (Chris Swann/ The Battalion)
Down but not out
May 23, 2024
Advertisement
Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp attends the Class of 1972 50-year reunion in Kyle Field on April 20, 2022.
A&M System’s Title IX director suspended after supporting Biden's Title IX changes
Nicholas Gutteridge, Managing Editor • May 23, 2024
Advertisement
A fighter jet squadron flies over during the National Anthem before Texas A&M’s game against Arkansas at Olsen Field on Saturday, May 18, 2024. (Chris Swann/The Battalion)
Bryan-College Station Regional participants announced
Ian Curtis, Sports Writer • May 27, 2024

For the second time in three seasons, No. 3 national seed Texas A&M baseball will host the Bryan-College Station Regional, where it’ll...

Advertisement
Beekeeper Shelby Dittman scoops bees back into their hive during a visit on Friday, April 5, 2024. (Kyle Heise/The Battalion)
Bee-hind the scenes
Shalina Sabih, Sports Writer • May 1, 2024

The speakers turn on. Static clicks. And a voice reads “Your starting lineup for the Texas A&M Aggies is …” Spectators hear that...

Kennedy White, 19, sits for a portrait in the sweats she wore the night of her alleged assault inside the Y.M.C.A building that holds Texas A&M’s Title IX offices in College Station, Texas on Feb. 16, 2024 (Ishika Samant/The Battalion).
'I was terrified'
April 25, 2024
Scenes from 74
Scenes from '74
April 25, 2024
Advertisement
Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
Farewell from the graduating Battalion staff of 2024
The BattalionMay 4, 2024

Georgia authorities defend police response in slayings, abduction case

ATLANTA – Authorities said Wednesday they could not have saved four people killed in rural Georgia even though 911 calls reveal police knew of a possible slaying 7 1/2 hours before entering the victims’ homes.
On Jan. 7, Melissa Peeler repeatedly told dispatchers in Gordon and Floyd counties that suspect Jerry William Jones had called her and said he killed her family and kidnapped her three daughters.
After an initial call at 3:30 p.m., police checked the outside of the two homes where the killings occurred, then left after mistakenly concluding that nothing was wrong.
In one phone call at 9:39 p.m., Peeler reiterated that Jones had told her what he had done and bragged about it: ”Looks like I have custody now,” Peeler said Jones told her.
It wasn’t until 11 p.m., following yet another call from Peeler, that police entered the homes in the tiny town of Ranger, about 55 miles north of Atlanta.
Jones is accused of fatally shooting Peeler’s parents, Tom and Nola Blaylock, and strangling Peeler’s sister, Georgia Bradley, and Peeler’s 10-month-old daughter by Jones, Jerri ”Harley” Jones.
Jones was captured a day after the killings during a police chase that ended in East Ridge, Tenn. The three girls were released unharmed.
On Wednesday, Jones waived extradition to Georgia, where he faces murder, kidnapping and weapons possession charges. Jones, who shot himself in the face as the chase ended, is recovering in a hospital.
John Bankhead, a spokesman for the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, insisted it would have made no difference when police found the bodies.
But Peeler’s sister Kathy O’Donnell said blood was visible on the front door of her parents’ home and police should have known something was wrong.
”I can’t help but think that just maybe had they gone in at that time, maybe my sister might have been breathing,” she said.
Peeler’s 911 calls contradict law enforcement officials’ earlier contention that they didn’t learn about the deaths until about 10:45 p.m. on Jan. 7.
”That’s what the sheriff told us,” Bankhead said. ”I don’t think he knew. You’ll have to ask him.”
Gordon County Sheriff Jerry Davis and County Attorney Suzanne Hutchinson did not return repeated phones calls Wednesday from The Associated Press.
Peeler’s lawyer, Brent Erwin, said her client would have no comment.

Leave a Comment
Donate to The Battalion

Your donation will support the student journalists of Texas A&M University - College Station. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The Battalion

Comments (0)

All The Battalion Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *