The woman whose anonymous tip led to a recent search for remains of Lauren Giddings got a visit Friday from District Attorney David Cooke.
Late last month, the woman told police she remembered seeing a man resembling accused killer Stephen McDaniel coming from bushes near the border of Bibb and Houston counties.
The tip led to a five-hour search on Aug. 23, but no remains were found, although a cadaver dog alerted on the property.
Cooke and Assistant District Attorney Nancy Scott Malcor spent 30 to 40 minutes talking to the woman, who was driving with a friend down Houston Road about two years ago when she saw a suspicious, long-haired man.
Never miss a local story.
Both the woman and her friend are now convinced that they saw McDaniel, who is charged with killing his Mercer law school classmate in June 2011.
“I’m positive that was his face,” she told The Telegraph after the meeting Friday. “I’ll never forget that face, that wild-looking person.”
Cooke said his office is exploring all leads and all the evidence since Giddings’ torso was found in a roll-away garbage bin outside her apartment.
McDaniel lived in the neighboring unit on Georgia Avenue, and he was later charged with murder.
Cooke declined to discuss his conversation with the tipster, who is now expected to be a witness at trial.
“We expect her to testify and offer relevant testimony,” Cooke said Friday afternoon.
The woman said the discovery of two bodies a couple of weeks ago in Houston County near the juncture of Ga. 49 and U.S. 41 jogged her memory of the man she saw.
When talking to others about it at work, she was reminded about McDaniel and the quest to find the rest of Giddings’ body.
Although she had only seen courtroom images of a clean-shaven McDaniel with a ponytail, she found another picture of him online last month from when he had facial hair.
Although she was initially scared to come forward, the woman said her own cousin has been missing for about 14 years, and she wants to help the Giddings family.
“I know it hurts,” she said.