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Posted: Saturday, October 13th 2012 at 2:17am

Clayton man charged in Friday murder in Rabun County

By Rob Moore Editor
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William Edward Owens
CLAYTON – A tracking dog from Lee Arrendale State Prison in Alto led Rabun County deputies to a man now charged in connection with the stabbing death of another Friday afternoon.

“The suspect, who is known as William Edward Owen, 51, of Clayton, was arrested and charged with murder,” said Rabun County Sheriff’s Office Chief Investigator Gerald Johnson about 1:45 a.m. Saturday. “He has a first appearance scheduled for in the morning [Saturday].”

Johnson said the incident occurred late Friday afternoon several miles east of Clayton.

“On Oct. 12, between approximately 4 and 4:30 p.m., the Rabun County Sheriff’s Office responded to an incident dispatched via 9-1-1 to a possible stabbing on Joe Speed Road off Warwoman Road,” Johnson said.

“Upon arrival, deputies discovered a 47-year-old white male – whose name is not being released pending notification of the family,” Johnson said. “The victim had collapsed at a neighbor’s residence, asking for the neighbor to call 9-1-1 because he had been stabbed.”

Johnson said the victim, who suffered two stab wounds, was transported from the scene by an ambulance from Rabun County Emergency Medical Services. He was pronounced dead at Mountain Lakes Medical Center in Clayton.

“The coroner, Sam Beck, was notified,” Johnson said.

Even as the victim was being transported from the scene, deputies were combing the nearby area for the person responsible.

“Witnesses at the scene indicated that the suspect had fled into a cornfield north of the incident location,” Johnson said. “Deputies responded, along with tracking dogs from Lee Arrendale State Prison in Alto.”

Rabun County Sheriff’s Office contacted the Georgia Bureau of Investigation to assist in the case.

“The evidence led investigators to believe that the two subjects did have prior knowledge of each other, but the circumstances surrounding the incident are still under investigation,” Johnson said. “I can’t say much more than that right now.”

Johnson praised teamwork for the quick arrest.

In addition to the GBI, sheriff’s office, coroner, and tracking dogs, “members of the Rabun County Fire Department Warwoman Station assisted in helping with the crime scene,” Johnson said. “We utilized them for the lighting.”
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