breaking news

Third Trump Campaign official pleads guilty in Russia investigation

Thief discovers missing man's body in wall of abandoned motel


Highlights

Timothy Johnson was last seen Dec. 6.

The thief broke into the motel Sunday afternoon.

He found the body near a wall cutout that exposed copper pipes, left the scene and called 911 hours later.

‘Identification documents found on the remains indicated (it was) Timothy Johnson,’ authorities said.

The body of a missing man was found in an abandoned Spalding County motel after someone breaking into the property stumbled upon it, the sheriff’s office said Wednesday.

Timothy Johnson was last seen Dec. 6, sheriff’s Capt. Dwayne Jones said. Griffin police recovered his car the next day at Crestview Baptist Church in the 1600 block of North Expressway.

Investigators searched the property on three occasions and cadaver dogs searched the area twice, according to Jones. Johnson was nowhere to be found.

His body was not discovered until Sunday, when the thief came across it at a former Howard Johnson also in the 1600 block of North Expressway, authorities said.

He broke into the motel about 3 p.m., found the body near a wall cutout that exposed copper pipes and plumbing and left the scene, according to the sheriff’s office.

The thief called 911 about three hours later, Jones said. His name and his whereabouts are unknown.

Griffin police Lt. Joe Hudson was called to the motel and followed a foul odor to one of the rooms, authorities said. 

Hudson later notified fire officials, who located the body.

“Identification documents found on the remains indicated (it was) Timothy Johnson,” the sheriff’s office said. 

The body was taken to the GBI crime lab for an autopsy and positive identification.

“All indications are that the body recovered is Timothy Johnson,” Jones said. “No foul play is suspected at this time, but investigators are awaiting results from the autopsy.”

VIEW: Map of crime in metro Atlanta

NEW: Join the discussion at the AJC's Crime & Safety Facebook group

Know what’s really going on with crime and public safety in your metro Atlanta community, including breaking news, trial coverage, trends and the latest on unsolved cases. Sign up for the AJC’s crime and safety newsletter delivered weekly to your inbox.

In other news:



Next Up in Local

Learn what it’s like to be a cop at Gwinnett Citizens Police Academy
Learn what it’s like to be a cop at Gwinnett Citizens Police Academy

Get a behind-the-scenes look at how Gwinnett County police officers do their jobs at the next Gwinnett County Police Department Citizens Police Academy. The academy is a twice weekly program that will run from March 20 to May 10. Sessions meet on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. READ | Ex-KSU player arrested in $3M identity fraud...
DeKalb effort to relocate Confederate monument generates no interest
DeKalb effort to relocate Confederate monument generates no interest

DeKalb County hasn’t received any proposals for relocating a Confederate monument located at the old county courthouse. As a result, the deadline for submissions was extended 30 days. Zachary Williams, the county’s chief operating officer, said outreach efforts like newspaper ads are being planned in hopes of creating leads. ...
I-75 express lanes schedule will change for NASCAR traffic
I-75 express lanes schedule will change for NASCAR traffic

A NASCAR tripleheader weekend kicks off today at the Atlanta Motor Speedway in Henry County, and Peach Pass customers will see changes to the toll lanes along I-75 to accommodate the traffic pouring in and out of Henry County. The South Metro Express lanes will remain in the northbound direction for most of the weekend, from 1 p.m. Saturday until 11...
Nursing home employee indicted in death of neglected veteran surrenders
Nursing home employee indicted in death of neglected veteran surrenders

One of three nursing home employees accused of repeatedly ignoring a World War II veteran’s last pleas for help before his death has surrendered to authorities. Wanda Nuckles, 61, of Buford, turned herself in to the DeKalb County Sheriff’s Office on Friday, sheriff’s spokeswoman Cynthia Williams said. Nuckles was a licensed...
Explosives found in vacant Cobb house
Explosives found in vacant Cobb house

Explosives were found in a vacant house in Cobb County, police said Friday. The explosives were found in the 2900 block of Bay Berry Drive, Channel 2 Action News reported. <div></div><br><blockquote class="twitter-tweet"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Right now: Cobb Police & Fire have closed...
More Stories