The man who police believe helped dispose of real estate agent Stan White's body told them that William Lumpkin planned the killing of Mr. White in advance.
According to police affidavits - given by Augustus Williams and submitted to Superior Court Judge J. Carlisle Overstreet by police - Mr. Lumpkin picked up Mr. Williams at his Hephzibah home at about 9 a.m. on Sept. 2, the day police believe Mr. White was killed and dumped in the Savannah River.
Mr. Lumpkin drove to his Courthouse Lane office in downtown Augusta telling Mr. Williams he intended to kill a man by beating him in the head with an 8-pound sandbag, according to the affidavit which was signed by Richmond County Sheriff's Investigator Wayne Pinkston.
Mr. Lumpkin called Mr. White and asked him to come to the office. He already had the sandbag, nylon rope, duct tape, gloves and a tarp, Mr. Williams told police.
Mr. Williams saw Mr. White arrive at the office and go inside, and then he heard thumping noises and a man pleading for help, he told police.
Mr. Lumpkin said he had wrapped Mr. White's head in a clear plastic Saran wrap, Mr. Williams told police. Police haven't determined if Mr. White died from blunt trauma or asphyxia.
When Mr. Williams went back inside the office, Mr. White's body was wrapped in the tarp and taped at the head, middle and feet, Mr. Williams told police.
He helped Mr. Lumpkin load the body into the trunk of Mr. Lumpkin's Volvo, according to the affidavit.
Mr. Lumpkin allegedly told him that he was going to take the body about 60 miles away where no one would find it, Mr. Williams told police.
Mr. Lumpkin was arrested Sept. 9 and charged with murder in Mr. White's slaying. He was later indicted on those murder charges and he has a bond hearing set for today at 2:30 p.m. in the Richmond County Law Enforcement Center.
Terry Jackson, a Savannah trial lawyer who specializes in death penalty cases, will likely defend Mr. Lumpkin.
In searches at Mr. Lumpkin's Augusta office and his Evans home, officers collected numerous items including a copy of a check to Mr. White for $25,000, clothes, telephone records, computer equipment and files, Reynolds Wrap, vacuum cleaner bags, a box of Hefty bags, Saran Wrap, and an empty roll of duct tape.
District Attorney Danny Craig has not commented on whether Mr. Williams will be charged.
Authorities believe friction between Mr. White and Mr. Lumpkin stems from Mr. Lumpkin's financial woes, which led to the Labor Day confrontation at his law office, resulting in Mr. White's death.
Mr. Lumpkin, a veteran criminal defense attorney and former assistant district attorney, had fallen behind payments on his Country Place subdivision home and Mr. White purchased it at a public auction Sept. 5, 1995. He was renting it to the lawyer and his family. Mr. White was in the preliminary stages of evicting Mr. Lumpkin, sources said.
Staff Writer Brad Schrade contributed to this article.