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Hunter's death considered suspicious

Monday, Sept. 24, 2012 11:24 PM
Last updated Tuesday, Sept. 25, 2012 3:10 PM
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The Wilkes County Sheriff’s Office and the Georgia Bureau of Investigation are looking into the death of a hunter whose body was found near Thurmond Lake, authorities said.

A Georgia State Patrol helicopter found the body of 35-year-old Jeffrey Sean Gebhardt early Sunday morning in an area of marsh and grass that is normally underwater but was exposed because of the low lake level.

Wilkes County Sheriff Mark Moore said his office received a call late Saturday night that Gebhardt had called in saying he had been hunting in the Clarks Hill Wildlife Management area and was lost. Emergency and rescue personnel were sent out to search for him.

The Blairsville, Ga., deer hunter’s death is being called suspicious, but Moore refused to release further information.

An autopsy was conducted yesterday at the GBI’s crime lab in Augusta, but the results were not released.

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bubbasauce
22190
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bubbasauce 09/25/12 - 09:11 am
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Yes, something smells here. I

Yes, something smells here. I don't think this is an accident.

David Parker
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David Parker 09/25/12 - 11:09 am
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For safety-sake give us some

For safety-sake give us some detail on what happened out there. @GBI

Jane18
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Jane18 09/25/12 - 11:39 am
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Suspicious Death

This incident/accident/suspicious death, happened around the area located somewhere near Holliday Campground. Everything in this article is all my husband, brother, and friends know also. They, and others at the campground were talked to by law enforcement early Sunday morning.There was a large group of men walking through the WMA, trying scare up and kill a deer on Saturday. They did not check out the area or they would have known my husband and others were in tree stands. One man walked right under my husband. They were not very smart hunters......or at least did not seem to have experience in a WMA!

kaydee51
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kaydee51 09/25/12 - 01:15 pm
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they have ruled it murder-not

they have ruled it murder-not saying yet what happened. News-Reporter facebook page is giving all updates.

David Parker
7923
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David Parker 09/25/12 - 01:23 pm
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thanks for keeping us

thanks for keeping us informed posters!!!

Fiat_Lux
15912
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Fiat_Lux 09/25/12 - 01:28 pm
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kaydee51
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kaydee51 09/25/12 - 03:51 pm
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http://www.news-reporter.com/

another link to news reporter

kaydee51
18
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kaydee51 09/25/12 - 03:54 pm
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Hunter's death ruled

Hunter's death ruled murder
By KIP BURKE, news editor
Authorities have now determined that the weekend death of a lost hunter is a murder, after a North Georgia hunter reported lost on Saturday night was found dead Sunday in a remote marshy area of Clarks Hill Lake near Holliday Park.
Jeffrey Shawn Gebhardt, 35, of Blairsville, was found dead by searchers early Sunday morning, Sheriff Mark Moore said. Searchers from the Wilkes County Sheriff’s Office, Washington Fire Department, and the Georgia Department of Natural Resources had searched since late Saturday night. In the early hours of Sunday morning, Gebhardt’s body was spotted from the air by a Georgia State Patrol helicopter crew using heat-detecting infrared equipment.
Due to the condition of the body, Sheriff Moore said, the death was considered suspicious, and an autopsy was conducted Monday. As a result of the autopsy, he said, the GBI has determined that Gebhardt was murdered. No details on the nature of the murder have been released pending further investigation. “The investigation is continuing with the evidence collected at the scene and with additional interviews,” he said.
Gebhardt had been hunting with a friend from north Georgia in the Clarks Hill Wildlife Management Area during a special three-day hunt. The hunters had been camping in the Holliday Park area since Thursday, the sheriff said, and began to hunt Friday. Gebhardt’s friend told investigators that during their hunt Friday evening, Gebhardt had gotten lost, but was able to reconnect with his friend.
Then, on Saturday night, Gebhardt again became separated from his friend, who reported him missing at 10:12 p.m. The Wilkes County 911 center apparently had intermittent cell phone contact with one of the hunters that evening, but reception was spotty. A search party, including deputies, Washington Fire Department Rescue personnel, DNR rangers, and other volunteers, searched the wildlife area, trying to attract his attention with spotlights, flashlights, and blue police lights, and by sounding sirens every few minutes to help the lost man locate rescuers.
By 11:30, searchers had rough GPS coordinates from the man’s cell phone to work with, and a Georgia State Patrol helicopter had joined the search, using heat-sensitive infrared detection equipment to locate the man. “The body was in a very remote area,” the sheriff said.
Sometime after 2 a.m., the helicopter crew located the heat signature of a man in a marshy area of Clarks Hill Lake, and directed ground crews to the area. The searchers reached Gebhardt’s body by 3 a.m., Sheriff Moore said, and due to the condition of the body, “there were a number of questions on his death.”
By 7 a.m., investigators from the Georgia Bureau of Investigation and the DNR, along with crime lab technicians, were on the scene investigating, and by mid-afternoon Sunday were able to remove the body and transport it to Wills Memorial Hospital for examination, then to the crime lab in Augusta for Monday’s autopsy.
As the ongoing investigation reveals new details of the murder case, the News-Reporter’s website, www.news-reporter.com, will be updated with breaking news.

Minnie Lynnie
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Minnie Lynnie 09/25/12 - 06:47 pm
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kaydee51 - Thank you so much

kaydee51 - Thank you so much for posting the other article. I do not live in the area, and I'm trying to stay up on the current information regarding Jeff's death. Unfortunately, the other site you listed the link to requires $$$ to read the full article. Again, thank you from some of Jeff's family.

AutumnLeaves
8471
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AutumnLeaves 09/25/12 - 07:42 pm
0
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Question?

Did he come through Augusta, Evans, or North Augusta in the week before this?

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