Macon police make arrest in Monday homicide

Results in the autopsy of Erica Jackson, the 34-year-old woman found dead in her Murphy Homes apartment Monday afternoon, were not returned Tuesday, Bibb County coroner Leon Jones said.

Jones said he expected to receive an autopsy report from the GBI office in Atlanta today and be able to rule a cause of death in the case.

Jackson, an Alabama native who worked as a nursing assistant at Macy Retirement Center in south Macon, was found by Macon police at her 2410 B St. apartment after her boyfriend, Reginald Copeland, reported entering the home and seeing large amounts of blood on the walls and floor.

Police said her body was located under a green rug in the living room of the two-story brick residence in the rear of the public housing complex in south central Macon.

Police have charged Jonathan Robinson, 39, with Jackson’s murder.

Robinson, 39, of Leon Drive, was arrested Monday near the corner of Second and Bowden streets — approximately six blocks from Jackson’s apartment.

He remains in custody at the Bibb County jail without bond on additional charges of burglary, auto theft and violation of state parole, according to authorities. Police have released no other details in the homicide investigation.

Copeland, 46, who lives in LaGrange, said he had been trying to reach Jackson since about 6 a.m., an hour they would speak almost everyday.

When she didn’t call and he wasn’t able to contact her, he worried.

“I thought maybe something had happened because she always kept her phone with her. I found out she didn’t report to work. I knew something was wrong. Something had to happen for her to not go to work on Monday,” he said. “I went to see what was going on.”

Copeland said he decided to make the 90-minute drive to Macon at about 1:30 p.m., turning the key to her front door at about 3:15 p.m.

“I opened the door and looked and saw blood everywhere and closed the door and called 911,” he said.

Within an hour, police had arrested Robinson.

Robinson was released from Johnson State Prison in December 2007 after serving two years and six months on a theft conviction, according to the Georgia Department of Corrections database.

Copeland said he had never met Robinson, but he believes Jackson and her accused killer were friends.

“I don’t know him at all,” he said. “He was like a friend. That was the only way he could’ve gotten in the house. He flipped on her.”

Copeland said he met Jackson about three months ago while in Macon working as a referee at a high school basketball game.

“She was a good person. She loved life,” he said. “She was a family person.”

Jackson, he said, had five children living in Selma, Ala., with a sister but they would come to Macon for summers and holidays. She worked part-time as a concessions employee at the Macon Coliseum, he said.

Copeland said they had planned to celebrate his 47th birthday together today.

“We were just going to hang out and be together. It looks like that changed,” he said. “She’ll be dearly missed. That’s all I can say. I just want her to rest in peace right now.”

To contact writer Ashley Tusan Joyner, call 744-4347.