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Couple slain in their Barrow County home

By Joe Johnson

Authorities are investigating the deaths of a man and woman who were found shot to death last week in their home in Barrow County.

According to Nelly Miles, Director of Public & Governmental Affairs for the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, the Winder Police Department requested the GBI’s assistance with the double homicide investigation.

In an email to Classic City News, Miles said that on Friday, Winder police were asked to conduct a welfare check on the occupants of a home at 180 Bush Chapel Drive, and when officers entered the home, they found the bodies of Marcus Gardner, 29, and Christina Virginia Smith, 30, both of whom had been fatally shot.

The victims were last seen or heard from about two days prior to the request for a welfare check, said Miles, who added that a light green Ford Escape belonging to one of the victims was missing from the home.

No further details of the investigation were being released at this time, the GBI official said.

Miles said that anyone with information about the case can contact the Winder Police Department at (770) 867-2156 or the GBI’s regional investigative office in Athens at (706) 552-2309.

Anonymous tips can also be submitted by calling 1-800-597 TIPS (8477), online at, or by downloading the See Something, Send Something mobile app.

The slayings are the second double homicide in Winder in three years.

William Hess, 71, and his wife, Dorothy Hess, 72, were found shot to death on May 20, 2019 in their home on Southridge Road, in a neighborhood on the west side of Fort Yargo State Park.

No arrests have been made in that case

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Mar 09, 2022


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