Grinstead search continues; investigators under gag order - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Grinstead search continues; investigators under gag order

Searchers went through the pecan grove Tuesday (Source: WALB) Searchers went through the pecan grove Tuesday (Source: WALB)
Judge Melanie Cross issued the gag order in the case (Source: Tift Circuit) Judge Melanie Cross issued the gag order in the case (Source: Tift Circuit)
Ryan Duke at his first appearance  (Source: WALB) Ryan Duke at his first appearance (Source: WALB)
Tara Grinstead (Source: Family) Tara Grinstead (Source: Family)
FITZGERALD, GA (WALB) -

Investigators returned to the scene of a Ben Hill County pecan grove, near Bowens Mill Road, searching for the remains of Tara Grinstead.

Whatever they do find, it's not likely that investigators will be able to give much more information, since Tift Circuit Judge Melanie Cross issued a gag order on the case Tuesday, according to District Attorney Paul Bowden.

On Tuesday, 41 GBI agents, police officers and deputies searched for any remains of Grinstead or any evidence in the case.

The search ended Tuesday night around 7 and resumed Wednesday morning.

GBI agents said they were making headway in their investigation, narrowing their search on a property they first investigated last week.

The GBI has set up a tent in the wood and officials are sifting through some of the dirt, collecting as much evidence as possible.

"We are focusing on the information that this may be a possible site of where she may have been disposed of," said Special Agent in Charge, J.T. Ricketson.

Residents living in the area said that they want answers so the rumors will come to an end. 

"This is Georgia you know. You don't believe what you hear and only half of what you see," said resident Jim Cannal. 

Cannel said he was shocked when he learned of Ryan Duke's arrest. He said that Grinstead's death and the investigation have taken a toll on the community.

"Just one of those things where somebody goes missing, you just want to help and do everything you can to find them," resident James Wilcox explained.

Wilcox, a neighbor who lives near the property, was actually part of the initial search party back in 2005.

Wilcox said that he actually searched an area that was just five miles away from where investigators were searching on Wednesday.

"It's depressing, it's really depressing that something could happen especially around here, stuff like that doesn't happen," Cannal said.

GBI agents said that they are continuing to interview people. No additional arrests have been made. 

Officials said more evidence has come to light tying Ryan Duke to the murder since his arrest last week.

MORE: 11 years later: Arrest made, charges filed in Tara Grinstead murder case

Officials also said that the landowner of the property searched on Tuesday is not connected to the murder of Grinstead.

Copyright 2017 WALB. All rights reserved.

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