The mother and sister of a 23-year-old disabled man were arrested Friday after Richmond County investigators discovered his badly decomposed body in the south Augusta home where the three were living.
Deputies found Robin Adams Jr.’s body in the home at 4279 James Drive. Adams appeared to have been deceased for several weeks, Richmond County deputy coroner Johnny MacDonald said.
Adams’ mother, Angela Mercer, 43, and his sister, Deaidra Motley, 18, were charged Friday with concealing the death of a person, according to an e-mail from Sgt. Dan Carrier. He said more charges are pending the results of the autopsy.
The two women had been living in the residence with the body until Mercer was arrested Thursday on unrelated traffic charges and an outstanding warrant. Motley was booked into the Richmond County Jail on Friday night.
MacDonald said Adams’ body was dehydrated, mummified and covered in maggots, which indicated it had been there for a significant amount of time. Adams was mentally and physically handicapped. Neighbors said he used a wheelchair.
An autopsy on Adams’ body is scheduled Saturday by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation. MacDonald said there were no obvious signs of violence, but the cause of death won’t be known until after the autopsy.
Authorities were alerted about the situation by a family member who was visiting the home, which MacDonald said was in terrible condition. Trash and cockroaches littered the floor, and mixed with clothing that was strewn about. He said a refrigerator was full of dirty dishes instead of food.
Joan Chisholm, who lives on neighboring Cougar Drive, was walking by the scene Friday. She said she could smell feces but had no idea there may have been a body in the home for two months.
“I’m just shocked,” she said. “That is horrible what happened.”
Chisholm said she had seen Adams in his wheelchair, but did not know him or his mother.
Danny Triston, who lives a few houses down on James Drive, said he had also seen the man and his sister, but did not know them well. He said he could not believe a body could have been in the home for so long without anyone noticing.
“How did she cover the smell?” he asked. “I can’t believe this happened in my neighborhood.”
The Richmond County Sheriff’s office refused to comment on the case, saying they were completing interviews.