Autopsy shows Byromville man died from gunshot wound to the chest


BYROMVILLE, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – An autopsy shows the 60-year-old man who was found dead in Byromville died from a single gun shot to the chest.

Dooly County deputies and the Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI) have been combing through the neighborhood on Hill Street looking for answers. They want to what exactly happened Thursday morning. A woman, 47-year-old Priscilla Adams, a 17-month-old baby and a 17-year-old girl were shot just outside their home just after 4:00 a.m. Adams and the baby died at the scene.

A few hours later, the Dooly County K-Unit found the body of 60-year-old Willie James Merrell, who is known as ‘Shine Bone’, in his backyard.

This is the first homicide in Byromville since 2009.

Byromville Councilman, Eddie Walker, says that kind of crime doesn’t happen around that area.

“I don’t know what’s going on in Byromville, ’cause you know, it’s a small town,” said Walker. “I haven’t been able to sleep really myself. Because we have a killer on the loose.”

Walker lives just down the street from where the shooting happened.

“The killer must’ve known her routine, to kill her like that,” said Walker.

Walker says Adams always woke up early to take her daughter to school and her son’s girlfriend’s baby to daycare, before she headed to work at Tyson Foods.

“She was a hardworking lady and I know her family, she’s got a large family,” said Walker. Nice set of peoples.”

Walker also knew Shine Bone.

“Shine was a real nice guy,” said Walker. “He was a hard working fella.”

The GBI says officers found a rifle in Merrell’s backyard, as well.

“We have crime scene specialists that are trained to collect evidence off of the weapon and we’re also going to do forensic analysis of that weapon,” said GBI Special Agent in Charge, J.T. Ricketson.

Many questions still unanswered, as the community grieves.

“There’s a lot of hurt for us, as responding officers,” said Dooly County Sheriff Craig Peavy.” It’s heart breaking, it’s devastating, but we have a job to do. And we’re going to do it.”

The GBI released the scene just after 6:30 p.m. Friday. They will be sending evidence into the crime lab Monday morning.

We’ll keep you updated as we learn more.