Tip unsuccessful in search for suspect UGA professor's Jeep

Tuesday, April 28, 2009 5:03 AM
Last updated 5:12 PM
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BOGART, Ga. -- Oconee County sheriff’s deputies this afternoon inspected a property off Plantation Road in rural Bogart after a woman remembered that on Saturday she saw an SUV like the car of missing University of Georgia professor George Zinkhan III.

Becky Stonecipher saw the Jeep pass her house — which sits on a dirt road about six miles west of Watkinsville — about two hours after Zinkhan allegedly shot and killed his wife and two men outside of the Athens Community Theater, she said this morning.

But deputies didn’t find any immediate evidence on the scene.

“I didn’t really think anything about it until Sunday morning, when I was watching TV and saw a picture of the Jeep police were looking for,” she said.

Authorities across the country are searching for Zinkhan.

He was last seen driving a red 2005 Jeep Liberty with Georgia tag number AIX 1376.

A similar Jeep passed Stonecipher’s house between 2 and 3 p.m. Saturday.

“I pay attention to things like that,” she said, explaining that some of her neighbors’ homes had been burglarized.

Stonecipher called Athens-Clarke police Sunday morning, and a detective arrived this morning to interview her, she said.

Early this afternoon, Oconee County sheriff’s deputies spoke with the woman and decided to check out her story, Sheriff Scott Berry said.

About a half dozen sheriff’s deputies inspected nearby property, including outside a large metal warehouse with garage doors that could easily fit several vehicles, but they saw no signs of fresh tire tracks.

Still, the deputies are trying to find the property owner and get permission to enter the building.

“We can’t rule it out” that Zinkhan’s Jeep might be there, a deputy said.

Stonecipher was glad officers were tracking down her tip.

“I’m so scared when I’m here by myself and my husband is working,” she said. “I’m worried about what might be down the road. I’ve moved furniture against my doors and windows.”

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pattym35
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pattym35 04/28/09 - 07:41 am
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where are all the quick to

where are all the quick to spew uninformed opinions and condemn without knowing all the facts regulars on this one?

NEone
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NEone 04/28/09 - 08:28 am
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They're still at work. Give

They're still at work. Give 'em time.

fyjigmo
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fyjigmo 04/28/09 - 08:54 am
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we are pretty sure the good

we are pretty sure the good professor already knew he had commited a crime. I wouldn't think an alert would tell him anything new.....

pattym35
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pattym35 04/28/09 - 10:49 am
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Nope, can't be that they're

Nope, can't be that they're at work. They're spewing at other articles, wonder why they're staying clear of this situation???

themaninthemirror
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themaninthemirror 04/28/09 - 11:41 am
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This is a situation of which

This is a situation of which little is known. Even though it has local ties, it did not happen here. Many things can be speculated, but having little knowledge of the professor and his wife, none of us know exactly what was going on to cause this. Whatever the reason was,neither Marie Bruce, nor the other two people deserved to die. I am sure one of those two just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. As for UGA delaying the alert until they could figure out how to remove the professor from the system, I agree with a previous post. He knew what he had done, he knew he wouldn't be able to just walk away, so he knew he would be sought by the auhorities.

pattym35
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pattym35 04/28/09 - 12:38 pm
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I agree with you! I was

I agree with you! I was being sarcastic. The regular commentors usually don't care that they have no knowlede of a situation and base their opinions on gossip and speculations.

jajo1012
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jajo1012 04/28/09 - 12:49 pm
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fyjigmo, of course he already

fyjigmo, of course he already knew he committed a crime- did you not understand the point of the story? If someone were on a murderous rampage, and then they received an alert text like that, who knows what they might have decided to do next, out of anger or insanity? It could have "fueled the fire." It makes since to me.

Riverman1
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Riverman1 04/28/09 - 02:54 pm
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Did he have custody of the

Did he have custody of the children or was he only keeping them for the weekend?

FallingLeaves
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FallingLeaves 04/28/09 - 05:47 pm
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sense

sense

stingray966
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stingray966 04/28/09 - 06:14 pm
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maybe they deserved it, we'll

maybe they deserved it, we'll never know unless zinkhan is captured alive and talks.

pthsssh
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pthsssh 04/28/09 - 06:25 pm
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pattm - What is there to say?

pattm - What is there to say? He shot them in front of witnesses in a public setting. There is no mystery - he deserves the death penalty if he hasn't taken the cowardly way out already. Sheesh........

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