Kidnapped woman found shot dead in Alabama

Published 9:31 pm Monday, July 27, 2020

A woman kidnapped early Monday in the parking lot of a Georgia apartment complex was found shot to death hours later in neighboring Alabama, authorities said.

Four suspects were arrested on capital murder charges after a chase with sheriff’s deputies ended with the fleeing vehicle crashing.

Investigators found the body of 39-year-old Tameka Skinner of Columbus, Georgia, dumped near a roadside roughly 10 hours after she was kidnapped and her car stolen, Sheriff Heath Taylor of Russell County, Alabama, told reporters at a Monday news conference.

Taylor said that Skinner and her boyfriend were attacked at about 1 a.m. Monday in the parking lot of an apartment complex in Columbus near the Georgia-Alabama state line. News outlets reported the assailants took Skinner and her car.

Skinner’s sister, Rashaada Rogers, said that Skinner had been house-sitting at the apartment complex.

Authorities tracked Skinner’s car across the state line into Russell County, Alabama. While searching for the vehicle, deputies came across an SUV registered to the same address where they hoped to fine Skinner’s missing car. The driver of the SUV fled an attempted stop, and deputies chased it until the SUV crashed at about 6:30 a.m.

Four people inside the SUV were arrested and later charged in connection with the case, authorities said.

Deputies found Skinner’s car, partially burned, soon after the chase. A few hours later, they found her body.

The sheriff identified those arrested as Jayvonn Phillips, 23, of Seale, Alabama, and Columbus residents Demetria Johnson, 30, Shaun Johnson, 40, and Joshua Tolbert, 30. All four were jailed in Russell County on charges of capital murder and kidnapping. It was not immediately known if any of them had defense attorneys.

Taylor did not give a motive for the kidnapping and slaying.