Slain Milledgeville woman's son taken into custody


Baldwin County deputies arrested the son of a 76-year-old woman who was found dead in her Lake Sinclair home Wednesday.

Steven Barrett, 57, was being held in the Baldwin County jail on a probation violation after violating a restraining order blocking him from his mother's home, said Baldwin County Sheriff Bill Massee.

He was picked up the same day Sandra Brantley Barrett was found in the kitchen of her home, at 143 Bill Johnson Road.

During his booking photo Wednesday, deputies allowed him to wear some of their gear as he was arrested while only wearing shorts.

"He is a suspect in this crime, but we have not limited our investigation to only him," Massee said. "We have been to this location several times with domestic incidents in the past."

Steven Barrett, who had a history of violence against his mother, went to her neighbor's house Wednesday to report that Sandra Barrett was dead, said Massee, who grew up with the Brantley family.

"She was a real nice person. Her parents have helped with my campaign, just real nice folks," said Massee, who was standing on the Barrett's dock Thursday morning.

The Georgia State Patrol dive team searched the lake bottom, and GBI crime scene technicians were called to aid in the investigation.

"(They) are checking the lake for information purposes. We're not looking for anything specific," Massee said.

Divers found nothing during their search of about 125 feet of water frontage, the sheriff said late Thursday afternoon.

He declined to release the manner of her death.

Massee was back at the house Thursday afternoon. During the day, he met with the GBI to compare notes, including on evidence collected in the case, and to develop a timeline in Sandra Barrett's death.

To contact writer Liz Fabian, call 744-4303 and find her on Twitter@liz_lines.