Crime

Murder suspect called woman to come home. An hour later she was dead, her family says

Woman dies in apparent domestic violence case, GBI says

Tonia Herring, 49, of Forsyth, is dead and her boyfriend, Raymond Chambliss, 64, is in custody after an early morning homicide Friday, Aug. 3, 2018, on Jones Court in Monroe County, Georgia.
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Tonia Herring, 49, of Forsyth, is dead and her boyfriend, Raymond Chambliss, 64, is in custody after an early morning homicide Friday, Aug. 3, 2018, on Jones Court in Monroe County, Georgia.

Tonia Herring was at her aunt’s house Thursday night when she got a call just after 11 p.m.

Family members say her boyfriend, Raymond Chambliss, 64, wanted her to come home to the house she shared with him down the street at 107 Jones Court in Forsyth.

Less than an hour later, a report of a gunshots led to the discovery of her body in the front yard of Chambliss’ house not far downtown.

Herring, 49, was found dead of apparent gunshot wounds just after midnight Friday, GBI special agent in charge Joe Wooten said.

She was pronounced dead at the scene near Jones Street at the corner of the dead end court, which is about three blocks off Main Street, Forsyth police Maj. Alexander Daniels said.

Chambliss, 64, was taken into custody, Wooten said, and booked into the Monroe County Detention Center at about 3 a.m.

“This is an apparent act of domestic violence,” Wooten said.

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Raymond Chambliss

Family members gathered at Herring’s aunt’s house up the street where they last saw her alive.

The residential neighborhood was shaken by the first homicide in the city in four years since 5-year-old Heaven Woods was killed, Daniels said.

A man, who lives across from Chambliss’ house, said he heard the couple arguing as the neighbor left for the store before midnight.

When he returned, he heard a couple of gunshots and Chambliss yelling to another neighbor to call the police at about 12:05 a.m.

Forsyth police roped off Jones Street near Jones Court as GBI agents combed the scene for clues.

At about 6:30 a.m. Friday, a school bus had to turn around to avoid the crime scene tape as the road remained blocked.

Jones Road reopened at about 8 a.m., but Jones Court remained roped off while the GBI processed evidence.

Chambliss was charged with felony murder after he “with malice of forethought and during the commission of the felony crime aggravated assault, fired a .380 caliber handgun” at Herring, according to the warrant.

“Tonia Herring was struck by a bullet from this firearm which caused her death,” the arrest warrant stated.

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