Decapitation mystery: Body found in lake

Body likely that of elderly woman, police say

Saturday, May 17, 2014 6:48 AM
Last updated 6:51 AM
  • Follow Crime & courts

EATONTON, Ga. — Investigators found a body Friday that they believe to be that of a missing 87-year-old Georgia woman whose husband was discovered slain and decapitated in the couple's home earlier this month, Putnam County Sheriff Howard Sills said.

Hermond  AP
AP
Hermond

A crime laboratory will definitively determine whether the remains are those of Shirley Dermond, and establish a cause of death in a case that has perplexed investigators in central Georgia.

The body matches the general description of Dermond and has similar surgical scars, Sills told a news conference. He described the case as a homicide, but he said investigators could not see any obvious signs of trauma on the remains. Authorities suspect the couple were killed May 2 or May 3.

"We now unfortunately know that Shirley Dermond was murdered, and we're no longer, unfortunately, seeking to rescue her," Sills told reporters during a news conference. "As bad as that is, it progresses our investigation."

The sheriff said he hoped a forensic examination of the remains might yield more clues that could assist investigators. Authorities also plan to use an underwater submersible to examine the bottom of the lake for evidence.

The killing was a shocking anomaly in a gated, exclusive community guarded by private security. Police have said they do not believe the violence was random. The couple's lakefront home showed no signs of a struggle or forced entry and no ransom note was left behind.

Sills said the body was discovered five to six miles from the couple's home, raising the possibility that the assailant or assailants may have used a boat to gain access to the property and possibly took Shirley Dermond with them when they left.

"That body was transported there, or at least to that vicinity," Sills said.

Before the discovery of the wife's body, authorities had treated her disappearance as a potential kidnapping, even as they feared she may be dead. They displayed her picture on area billboards in the hope it might generate tips. Sills said investigators have also consulted with agents in the FBI's behavioral unit in the hopes of gleaning insight about who might be responsible.

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seenitB4
85152
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seenitB4 05/17/14 - 06:53 am
5
0
So sad

I'm so sorry for this family..

Riverman1
82158
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Riverman1 05/17/14 - 07:00 am
5
1
The location of the body

The location of the body COULD mean the murderers are located in the area. They didn't take her that far.

curly123053
4542
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curly123053 05/17/14 - 07:05 am
4
0
Praying

I am praying for the members of this family too and hoping this case is solved quickly. The murderers in this case deserve the needle !

Graymare
2992
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Graymare 05/17/14 - 07:50 am
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Not so Random?

Sounds like someone very angry at them did this horrific crime.

freeradical
1052
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freeradical 05/17/14 - 09:09 am
2
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Injustice Brings About Its Own Doom

No peace in this life will the perpetrator of such evil ever have .
In this world and the eternal one to be faced shortly .
The purposeful turning over of oneself to pure evil is to bequeath unto
oneself a present & eternal future absent of peace , harmony , joy , enrichment , comfort , assurance , love .
Opting instead for an endless satanic night of agony and sorrow isolation from which there is no relief or escape .

" In your patience ye shall win your souls . "
( Luke 21:19 )

corgimom
31080
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corgimom 05/17/14 - 09:19 am
0
3
I don't think she lived more

I don't think she lived more than 20 minutes after she left her home, if that.

corgimom
31080
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corgimom 05/17/14 - 09:21 am
3
0
But you just cannot fathom

But you just cannot fathom that depth of evil.

pottsville
138
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pottsville 05/17/14 - 09:23 am
3
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Shirley Dermond

Eighty seven years here on earth, then murdered.

historylover
6963
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historylover 05/17/14 - 10:11 am
7
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Horrific

Sadly, this will probably turn out to be a family member or friend. Not that I'm an expert, but after watching many years of true crime stories, they almost always turn out to be the perpetrator(s).

IBeDogGone
2982
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IBeDogGone 05/17/14 - 12:21 pm
5
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Correct historylover

This will turn out to be someone very close to either one or both of the victims, it puzzles me that all of the statements made by the couples family are made from their homes and it does not appear they have come to the area of the crime.

GnipGnop
11835
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GnipGnop 05/17/14 - 01:18 pm
3
0
Could possibly be someone

That worked for them and thought they could get cash money also...

SheilaJ15
438
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SheilaJ15 05/17/14 - 04:03 pm
4
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I am wondering if maybe who

I am wondering if maybe who ever did this, purposely dumped this poor lady in the lake with hopes that no one would find her, and therefore, believe that she she killed her husband and then fled. I think that they should follow the money. Greed/money is usually a big motive in a lot of homicides.

rmwhitley
5542
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rmwhitley 05/17/14 - 05:46 pm
0
0
As all
Unpublished

democrats advocate: "forgive and forget". As far as I'm concerned, when the scum is/are caught, put him/her/they out of our misery IMMEDIATELY.

jdsgirl63
2224
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jdsgirl63 05/17/14 - 09:32 pm
1
0
My heart goes out to the

My heart goes out to the family of this couple. It's difficult for anyone when a loved passes, but to have them taken so brutally is beyond comprehension. I do hope they find the monster(s) who committed this crime and that they are held accountable to the fullest possible degree.

It makes you wonder at the depravity in this world... how can someone (or multiple someones) commit such a heinous act and carry on with their lives? You'd think the guilt and horror would eat them up and they'd turn themselves in. Sadly, they probably don't even think about what they've done and may be working on their next victim.

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