Third body found in search for 3 missing Georgians

GBI: Arrest made in connection to disappearances and deaths

NASHVILLE, GA (WALB) - A third body was found Thursday as officials continued investigating after three people went missing Tuesday, according to Berrien County Sheriff Ray Paulk.

Paulk said that after two bodies were found in Atkinson County Wednesday, a third was found off of Highway 135 late Thursday afternoon in Berrien County, not far from where the other two bodies were found.

One person was arrested Wednesday in connection to the disappearance of the three people who went missing Tuesday and the death of the two found Wednesday, according to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation.

Jonathan Douglas Vann, 20, of Nashville, was arrested in connection to the disappearances and deaths and booked into the Berrien County Jail.

Jonathan Douglas Vann (Berrien County Sheriff's Office/WALB)
Jonathan Douglas Vann (Berrien County Sheriff's Office/WALB)

None of the deceased have been identified.

The Berrien County Sheriff’s Office requested the GBI to assist with the missing persons investigation following the discovery of a vehicle on fire. On Tuesday, at approximately 5:30 a.m., the Berrien County Sheriff’s Office responded to the scene of a vehicle on fire in the area off Highway 135 at the Alapaha River near the Atkinson County line in Berrien County.

As a result of the investigation, it was determined that the car was being used by Bobbie Lynn Moore, 22.

Further investigation determined that Moore, Ronnie Wayne Hackle, Jr., 27, and Mercedes Maelyn Hackle, 17, were not responding to attempts to make contact.

The GBI, with the assistance of the Berrien County Sheriff’s Office, Atkinson County Sheriff’s Office, Georgia State Patrol and the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, have since located the remains of two individuals whose identities have not yet been confirmed.

Ronnie Hackle (left), Mercedes Hackle (center), and Bobbielynn Moore (right). (Source: Facebook)
Ronnie Hackle (left), Mercedes Hackle (center), and Bobbielynn Moore (right). (Source: Facebook)

The remains are being sent to the GBI Medical Examiner’s Office in Macon for autopsy and identification.

The investigation is active and ongoing, GBI officials said.

Anyone with information is encouraged to contact the Berrien County Sheriff’s Office at (229) 686-7071 or the GBI Douglas Office at (912) 389-4103.

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