Update (11:59 a.m.):
GBI Special Agent Wayne Smith said the boyfriend of Annie Belle Garrett was arrested Wednesday for possession of a firearm, but is still only "one of many" suspects in Garrett's disappearance.
"He was a convicted felon, so he was arrested for possessing the gun," Smith said. "But he hasn't been charged with murder or anything."
The name of the boyfriend or other suspects was not released. No further updates were available.
WARM SPRINGS, Ga. The body of missing Annie Belle Garrett of Shiloh may have been recovered from a shallow grave in rural Warm Springs and the womans boyfriend is now facing questions from authorities, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation said late Wednesday.
The body was discovered about 3 a.m. while the Harris County Sheriffs Office and Shiloh Police were searching for Garrett, who is related to Shiloh Mayor Jesse Ellison. Garrett was reported missing early Tuesday morning when a coworker attempted to give her a ride to Cagles Chicken Plant in Pine Mountain. The search for the woman led to the property in Meriwether County, about 40 miles northeast of Columbus.
GBI Special Agent Wayne Smith described the body as black and female, but officers didnt examine it further.
By it being a burial like that, we especially dont want to disturb it very much because they will methodically go through it in a lab setting, Smith said. The black female body is consistent with sex and race of the person thats missing. We know that much.
Smith didnt identify the boyfriend but said he was being questioned at the Harris County Sheriffs Office about 6:30 p.m. The grave was discovered about 20 yards from a family home of the boyfriend where Garrett and the man lived.
The boyfriend was living with her at that residence up until she went missing, so he has access to the residence obviously, Smith said. It was jointly rented by both of them.
Smith said authorities are talking to him to verify his version of events. The womans body was sent to the crime lab in Atlanta for an autopsy. Her car was taken to Columbus where it will be processed today.
The grave on the property wasnt dug haphazardly, the agent said. This one was pretty deep and pretty well dug, he said. She was totally covered. I dont know if she would have been found if we hadnt had some indication to look at the property in this area.
The Warm Springs property is about 20 to 25 miles from the womans residence in Shiloh. The Meriwether County Sheriffs Office joined Harris County authorities after the investigation led to several locations in Meriwhether County.
No positive identification has been made on the body. Its reasonable that its this missing lady, Smith said.
As part of the investigation, Smith said the womans single-wide mobile home also was searched. Smith confirmed the woman is related to the mayor of Shiloh. Garrett was in her early 50s.