Suspect in 8 Brunswick slayings has first hearing

Father, 7 others were found dead

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BRUNSWICK, Ga. --- A Georgia man suspected in the beating deaths of his father and seven others in their mobile home appeared before a Superior Court judge Tuesday for the first time since he was indicted on eight counts of murder in September.

Guy Heinze Jr. (right) talks to defense attorney Joseph Vigneri in the Glynn County Courthouse. Heinze is accused of killing his father and several members of an extended family last year.   Associated Press
Associated Press
Guy Heinze Jr. (right) talks to defense attorney Joseph Vigneri in the Glynn County Courthouse. Heinze is accused of killing his father and several members of an extended family last year.

Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty.

"He's scared to death, and he knows he didn't do it," Tyler Heinze, the suspect's 17-year-old brother, said as he left the courthouse.

Police arrested Guy Heinze Jr., 22, six days after the Aug. 29 discovery of the bloodied bodies of his father, Guy Heinze Sr., and several members of an extended family beaten with a blunt weapon inside the mobile home they shared.

It was Guy Heinze who alerted neighbors to call 911 that morning and sobbed as he told a police dispatcher: "My whole family's dead."

Nearly nine months later, authorities have released few details about the case and have not given a motive.

None of the evidence was discussed in court. The judge mostly went over procedural details with attorneys.

Superior Court Judge Amanda Williams denied a motion by Heinze's lawyers to ban the media from pretrial proceedings. She said she'll consider certain requests to shut the public out of hearings involving evidence.

Defense attorney Joseph Vigneri told the judge he's concerned news coverage of court proceedings before the trial could deprive Heinze of an impartial jury.

"If you can show that to this court, I will close this courtroom to the press as well as the public," Williams said.

While Heinze's brother watched from the back of the courtroom, family and friends of several of the other victims sat quietly up front.

They included Diane Isenhour, whose four children -- Chrissy Toler, 22; Russell D. Toler Jr., 20; Michael Toler, 19; and Michelle Toler, 15 -- were among those slain. So was her ex-husband, Rusty Toler Sr., 44.

The other victims were Rusty Toler's sister, Brenda Gail Falagan, 49, and Chrissy Toler's boyfriend, Joseph L. West, 30.

"It's a rough road," Isenhour said after the hearing. "I'm having faith in the Lord."

It will likely be years before the case goes to trial.

The judge said Tuesday she's giving attorneys on both sides at least three more months before she sets a date for Heinze's arraignment, when he will be asked to enter a plea.

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OnlyinAgs
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OnlyinAgs 05/26/10 - 07:42 am
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Hmmmm I wonder why there are

Hmmmm I wonder why there are no post to this story from you everyday posters. Oh wait I see the criminal is WHITE.

InChristLove
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InChristLove 05/26/10 - 08:21 am
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Way to start early this

Way to start early this morning with the race baiting, OnlyinAgs. This is a sad situation no matter what the race involved. Not really enough information to comment on at this time. You have a suspect charged with murder but no details......what ya gonna say?

corgimom
34064
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corgimom 05/26/10 - 09:12 am
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He's a sorry piece of trash

He's a sorry piece of trash and I wouldn't hesitate to give him the black needle.

OK, Only?

InChristLove
22481
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InChristLove 05/26/10 - 09:18 am
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corgimom, why do you consider

corgimom, why do you consider him a piece of trash and wouldn't hesitate giving him the needle? Do you know something the rest of us don't? I don't believe any evidence or details have been release to determine if he is guilty or innocent. Is it possible the man didn't do it (yes) and how bad will you feel if he is found innocent and someone else slaughtered his family after making those hateful statements?

Jane18
12332
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Jane18 05/26/10 - 09:47 am
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If, and I remind you Only, if

If, and I remind you Only, if this guy murdered all these people, I will be one of the few that say "stick a needle in him".

InChristLove
22481
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InChristLove 05/26/10 - 10:47 am
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If this guy committed all

If this guy committed all these murders, family members at that, then the statement "stick a needle in him" is justified. There are some who have already convicted and sentenced him before hearing any of the evidence. It will be a shame if it comes out during trial that this was done in retaliation by someone else due to drugs or money and this man is innocent of the murders.....especially after some are ready to stick a needle in him now.

corgimom
34064
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corgimom 05/26/10 - 06:54 pm
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There has been extensive

There has been extensive coverage of this in other newspapers.

He can remember coming home about midnight, then he "can't remember what he did" after that, then he comes home and- lo and behold! What does he find?

NA18374
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NA18374 05/26/10 - 10:14 pm
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Dear OnlyinAgs, Excuse me,

Dear OnlyinAgs,

Excuse me, ALLEGED criminal. Let's get it right, he has not been tried or sentenced yet!! By the tone of your comments, I would guess you feel like society has wronged you personally. The tone of your comments and your seeming prejudice certainly has no place on a jury!!

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