Crime & Courts

Richmond Co. | Columbia Co. | Aiken Co. |

Body of missing Waynesboro woman found in neighboring home

Saturday, Feb. 15, 2014 8:00 PM
Last updated 11:49 PM
  • Follow Crime & courts

The body of a 77-year-old Waynesboro woman who has been missing since Jan. 16 was found in the laundry room of a neighboring house Saturday, police say.

Arletha Diane Bennett, a retired teacher and Alzheimer’s patient who was last seen leaving her home on Herman Lodge Boulevard in January, was found dead inside a home on the same street, Waynesboro Police Chief Augustus Palmer III said.

No arrests have been made, Palmer said, and the Georgia Bureau of Investigation has been called in to assist the Waynesboro Police Department in the investigation. However, a man who lived at the house where Bennett’s body was found was taken into custody by authorities, according to a next door neighbor.

The body was removed by authorities around 7 p.m., according to the neighbor, who didn’t want to be named. The neighbor said Bennett lived eight houses down from the Herman Lodge Boulevard house her body was found in Saturday afternoon.

The neighbor said a large scale search for Bennett on Jan. 24 by paramedics, firefighters, police officers and volunteers went by that house.

“He was quiet,” the neighbor said of the man taken into custody. “An average person.”

Bennett was a 35-year veteran of the Burke County School System and was known for her caring but orderly approach to education and life.

In the weeks following her disappearance, police officers and volunteers from across the southeast travelled to Waynesboro to assist in the search, at times using all-terrain vehicles and police helicopters to cover the surrounding rural area.

Waynesboro police frequently turned to social media during the search for help, urging citizens to check any sheds, cars, buildings and wooded areas where Bennett might have sought shelter.

Last week, Bennett’s family increased the reward for any information leading toward Bennett’s discovery to $10,000.

Comments (12) Add comment
ADVISORY: Users are solely responsible for opinions they post here and for following agreed-upon rules of civility. Posts and comments do not reflect the views of this site. Posts and comments are automatically checked for inappropriate language, but readers might find some comments offensive or inaccurate. If you believe a comment violates our rules, click the "Flag as offensive" link below the comment.
KSL
143264
Points
KSL 02/15/14 - 08:21 pm
6
0
What a horrific situation!

What a horrific situation!

Truth Matters
8075
Points
Truth Matters 02/15/14 - 09:16 pm
4
0
Truly a sad ending. I never

Truly a sad ending. I never read whether or not dogs were used in the search. With her being found right in her own neighborhood it seems dogs would have aided in detecting her location.

Just My Opinion
6238
Points
Just My Opinion 02/15/14 - 09:22 pm
5
0
I am so sorry for the Bennett

I am so sorry for the Bennett family. I have no idea what's the story behind this story, but I hope justice will prevail.
I'll tell you another thing..I hope that someone doesn't profit off of this, by taking the reward money. If someone offered information to the police that led to the discovery and the arrest, they should've done it because it was the RIGHT thing to do. But, with that being said, at least this tragedy is nearing an end.

whocarestoday
305
Points
whocarestoday 02/15/14 - 09:50 pm
3
0
Prayers for the family.

Very sad news. Prayers for Mrs. Bennett's family and friends. This is just heartbreaking.

itsanotherday1
48147
Points
itsanotherday1 02/15/14 - 10:32 pm
2
0
Dittos to all of the above. A

Dittos to all of the above. A sadder ending to a sad story.

KSL
143264
Points
KSL 02/16/14 - 04:19 am
2
2
How did she get in the house?

How did she get in the house? And how long had she been there? Alot of unanswered questions now that the circumstances were brought up in the newspaper.

KSL
143264
Points
KSL 02/16/14 - 05:11 am
2
1
How did she get in the house?

I hope the family gets the answers.

ColdBeerBoiledPeanuts
11036
Points
ColdBeerBoiledPeanuts 02/16/14 - 06:19 am
4
0
Information

Due to the investigation not much information is being released. They don't want anything that could jeopardize prosecution, should it come to that...

my.voice
5156
Points
my.voice 02/16/14 - 09:10 am
3
0
This quiet lady deserved much

This quiet lady deserved much better.

sewerbabe
71
Points
sewerbabe 02/16/14 - 11:24 am
1
0
May she rest in peace. My deepest sympathy to the family.

I hope the investigation will reveal the events surrounding this lady's death who gave so much of her life to better the lives of others through education.. This is such a sad story. .

corgimom
38212
Points
corgimom 02/16/14 - 04:45 pm
2
0
Why would anybody want to

Why would anybody want to harm a 77 year old lady?

allhans
24817
Points
allhans 02/16/14 - 07:31 pm
0
2
Isn't it possible that the

Isn't it possible that the person reporting this had smelled a strange odor and would then be qualified to get the reward?

Back to Top

Top headlines

Sickness closes all McDuffie County schools

One day after closing an elementary because of excessive absences caused by an outbreak of illnesses, the McDuffie County School System has decided to enact an emergency closure of all seven of ...
Search Augusta jobs