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Gregory Henderson, accused of slaying Lee County Deputy James Anderson, waives preliminary hearing on Wednesday

OPELIKA - Gregory Lance Henderson, accused of striking Lee County Deputy James Anderson with a car and killing him Sept. 24, waived his preliminary hearing on Wednesday, sending his case to a grand jury.

District Court Judge Russell Bush also on Wednesday placed a gag order on the case, stopping those involved from speaking about its facts, Lee County District Attorney Nick Abbett said.

Henderson, 31, has been in custody since his arrest at Lee Road 240 and Lee Road 234 in Smiths Station, where 39-year-old Anderson was struck while attempting to make contact with the suspect, Sheriff Jay Jones said.

On Wednesday, Phenix City attorney Jeremy Armstrong waived the preliminary hearing on behalf of his client, who faces charges of capital murder and possession of a controlled substance, Abbett said.

Henderson was given a $3,000 bond for the possession charge, though records state that he’s being held without bond on the capital murder count.Henderson’s case is scheduled to be presented to a grand jury Nov. 30, along with 200 to 250 others, Abbett said. An indictment or dismissal of the case by grand jurors is expected later that week.

Anderson, a three-year veterans of the sheriff’s office, left behind a wife, daughter and son. The last Lee County Sheriff’s Office employee killed in the line of duty was Sheriff William “Buck” S. Jones, who was fatally shot by a murder suspect on June 29, 1932.

Henderson, who is unemployed and the unmarried father of four children, has been in and out of jail and prison since 1998, when he was 19 years old. He has been booked into the Muscogee County jail at least 16 times in the last 11 years, according to the Muscogee County Sheriff’s Office. He has also had traffic citations in Alabama, records show.

Henderson was sentenced to three years in prison, followed by 12 years’ probation, for a drug conviction in 2007. If he had served the full three years, he would still be in a Georgia prison today.

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