By Joe Johnson
Authorities were investigating the death this week of a 19-year-old Watkinsville resident as a homicide, Oconee County Chief Deputy Sheriff Lee Weems said Friday afternoon.
Weems said that the sheriff’s office received a 911 call at 12:25 a.m.Wednesday to report that after being out and about for several hours Joseph Kendall “Joey” Jackson of Cumberland Drive had returned home bleeding from “significant injuries."
Jackson subsequently died at Piedmont Athens Medical Center.
Weems said investigators believed something happened to Jackson at the corner of Whippoorwill Road and Cumberland Drive, where a large amount of shattered un-tinted safety glass from a vehicle’s side window was located.
The broken glass and Jackson’ death was believed to be related, but investigators did not know if the teen’s injuries were intentional or accidental.
“We are working this as a homicide because we have a young man who is dead and we don’t know how he got those injuries,” the chief deputy said.
Weems said investigators were awaiting autopsy results that could shed more light on how Jackson died.
“Obviously the autopsy report will be able to tell us more than just a visual inspection” of the victim’s injuries, Weems said.
Meanwhile, authorities are asking residents and repair shops to be watchful for any vehicles that recently had a side window shattered.
Anyone with information about this case is asked by the sheriff’s office to contact Investigator Justin Cash at (706) 769-3945 or firstname.lastname@example.org.