Missing man apparently found dead in Putnam County

A man reported missing May 18 may be the same man who was found dead Wednesday night off Oconee Springs Road in Putnam County.

A candlelight vigil was held this past weekend for Brandon Ingram, 29, who apparently crashed into a large tree off the highway about a week and a half ago, said Putnam County Sheriff Howard Sills.

“The car struck a big, huge oak tree and he’s been down there in that creek bottom,” Sills said.

It was clear the man died instantly, he said.

About 8:30 p.m. Wednesday, a passerby noticed a pattern in the grass leading to a deep gully or ravine,” Sills said.

Although the body was badly decomposed, Sills is convinced it is Ingram, who lived in Greene County, but washed cars in Putnam County.

A week and a half ago, Ingram did not return a car to its owner, who reported it missing.

Investigators reviewed surveillance images from that day after taking out a warrant for Ingram’s arrest.

Footage from the recreation department and a local grocery store shows Ingram wearing the same clothes as the victim of the fatal accident, who was driving the vehicle that was reported stolen.

The Putnam County Sheriff’s Office was actively working the case after hearing rumors that Ingram had been murdered.

At this point, Sills has no reason to suspect the man was a victim of anything other than an accident.

The body has been sent to the GBI crime lab for an autopsy and positive identification, Sills said.

To contact writer Liz Fabian, call 744-4303.