Over the years, the hunt for William Tony Lords killer has included a handful of suspects. None of them panned out.
Then last fall, investigators got a tip they say cracked the nearly three-year-old case, information that matched what they knew about the night Lord died.
Lord, 38, a truck driver and Army vet who served in Operation Desert Storm, was eating dinner with his folks March 5, 2010, when someone came to the door.
Lord stepped outside and fought with someone on the front porch of his parents Lizella home, a few miles south of Lake Tobesofkee. Two other people were in a 1992 Ford Taurus parked nearby in the 4700 block of Altama Place off Dixon Road, south of U.S. 80.
Wounded in the brawl, Lord staggered back into the house, bleeding.
His last words: They stabbed me.
Investigators cleared five suspects, including Lords ex-wife, soon after his death.
Then the case went cold.
But about two months ago, a deputy got a tip from someone who wasnt involved in the killing.
He gave us enough information for us to start interviewing people wed not interviewed before, said Bibb County sheriffs Capt. Mike Smallwood.
Investigators charged David Allen Stewart, 38, with murder Friday.
Stewart, of Wild Heron Drive in Lizella, was already being held at the county jail on an unrelated charge.
Stewart, who was locked up for burglary in November, had been a trusty in the jails kitchen until the murder charge was tacked on. He has since been moved to a maximum security cell, Smallwood said.
Investigator Jack Cleveland says Lord was an innocent victim.
He had done nothing wrong, Cleveland said.
Jail records show Stewart has been arrested 15 times on charges including multiple DUIs and family violence. Despite multiple trips to the county jail, Stewart has never been to prison.
Hes got a very violent past, Cleveland said. A lot of cases his family and friends are telling me hes never been arrested for. But just horror stories of his violent past.
Information from Telegraph archives was used in this report. To contact writer Amy Leigh Womack, call 744-4398. To contact writer Joe Kovac Jr., call 744-4397.