Manhunt Ends for Ga. Murder, Kidnap Suspect; Abducted Girls Safe, Suspect Wounded
Georgia Bureau of Investigation spokesman John Bankhead said Jerry William Jones is in serious condition but the three girls are safe following an auto accident on Interstate 75 at the Tennessee state line.
The official said it appears Jones shot himself after he crashed while attempting to exit from the interstate.
Gordon County Sheriff Jerry Davis said Jones is charged with killing the parents and sister of his estranged common-law wife along with his 10-month-old daughter.
Jones then called his wife to tell her about the killings and warned her he would hurt the surviving girls if she reported the crimes, Davis said.
"I've had him in the Gordon County jail for traffic violations," the sheriff said. "I need him back in the jail for murder. The way he's treated these people, I want him bad."
Authorities put out an Amber Alert for the three girls and issued an arrest warrant for Jones, 31, after discovering the bodies of his daughter, her grandparents and her aunt late Wednesday.
Jones had been considered armed and extremely dangerous. The FBI is sought a nationwide fugitive warrant for him.
Authorities and relatives identified the dead as Jerry Georgia Jones, age 10 months; her grandparents, Tommy and Nola Blaylock, and their daughter, Georgia Bradley. Keenan described the crime scene as "very violent."
"Several of the victims have suffered multiple gunshot wounds, and the infant appears to have been strangled," he said.
Davis said Jones' wife called the Gordon County Sheriff's Department at about 3:30 p.m. Wednesday to report that Jones had told her he had killed her family. When deputies first went to the home, they looked in through the windows and saw nothing amiss, he said.
Deputies went to the home after a second call at about 11 p.m., he said.
"The lady explained to us that he had done harm to her mother and daddy," Davis said. "A senior officer took it on his own to enter the home, and when he entered the home that's when we found the bodies."
Keenan said Jones appeared to have taken time after the killings to clean the crime scene and hide the bodies. And deputies were unable to issue an Amber Alert until shortly after 8 a.m. Thursday because they did not know what kind of car Jones was driving, Davis said.
"It took several hours to determine what type of vehicle was missing from the residence and to determine the tag number," he said.
The abducted children were identified as 10-year-old Brittany Phelps, 4-year-old Brandy Jones and 3-year-old Tammy Jones.
Bankhead said the younger girls are Jones' daughters, and the 10-year-old is Jones' estranged wife's daughter from a previous marriage.
David O'Donnell, who identified himself as Jones' brother-in-law, said Jones could be headed for south Florida, where he has relatives. He said Jones' relationship with the missing girls' mother collapsed over Christmas, and Jones had threatened to start killing people if she left him.
Another relative, who asked not to be identified, said Jones would occasionally visit family in Florida when he was angry about something and wanted to get away. And a source close to the family told CNN that Jones has threatened relatives repeatedly in the past.
The source called Jones "crazy, unpredictable and threatening."
In 1999, a relative in Georgia obtained a restraining order against him, the source said, but investigators said they were unaware of any such orders.