Neighbors in shock following Houston double homicide

jmink@macon.comAugust 19, 2013 

WARNER ROBINS -- In a wooded Houston County neighborhood, log homes, basketball goals, swimming pools and a “Neighborhood Watch” sign sit along Chadwick Road. Janet Smith often takes walks down the road and tells her friends she feels safe living there.

So Smith was shocked when she returned from vacation Monday evening to find law enforcement vehicles surrounding a home in the 100 block of Chadwick Road, where officials say a double homicide took place early Monday morning.

“You really don’t know your neighbors,” Smith said. “You think you know, and you don’t.”

Houston County sheriff’s deputies were called to the residence at 5 a.m., where they found evidence that shots had been fired inside, according to a news release. The bodies of two males believed to be killed at the home were found at about 12:30 p.m. in a wooded area near U.S. 41, Ga. 49 and North Houston Lake Road, the new release states.

Two males were in custody Monday evening, sheriff’s Capt. Jon Holland said. Authorities have not released the names of those in custody or those killed.

“We are still moving forward with the investigation,” Holland said.

A next door neighbor, who wished to remain unnamed, said that around 12:30 a.m. a truck wrecked in her front yard, veering into a ditch and uprooting a mailbox, and then parked at the residence where police say the double homicide took place. Large, muddy ruts sink into the neighbor’s ditch, and muddy tire tracks snake through the neighbor’s driveway, onto the road, and then into the driveway where authorities say the homicide took place. A mailbox, which belongs to Smith, lays on its side in the ditch.

About five people, men and women, have been renting the house for about a year, the neighbor said.

Several neighbors said they do not know the people who live in the multilevel log house, but some have heard gunshots and shouting before, and vehicles are constantly coming and going. The house sits in a thicket of woods, with a truck and Jeep parked in the driveway Monday evening and a faded Confederate flag hanging from the porch.

Dave Young, who lives nearby, said others have reported hearing gunshots coming from the residence. Police were called to the residence at least once before when someone complained of the noise, he said. He often hears “a lot of noise” coming from the house, he said.

“I’ve lived here 10 years, and this is the first time really ... that we’ve had anything go on back here,” Young said.

Last week, Smith heard shouting and squealing cars coming from the residence, she said. Still, she was stunned to return from vacation to find her mailbox in a neighbor’s yard and a double homicide investigation a couple driveways from her home.

“This is such a shock,” she said.

Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call the Houston County Sheriff’s Office at 478-542-2085 or 478-542-2080.

Houston editor Jennifer Burk contributed to this report. To contact writer Jenna Mink, call 256-9751.

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