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Law enforcement officials could charge by indictment a suspect in the death of a 33-year-old Fries woman. If so, the charge would be placed and prosecuted in Grayson County.
Investigators in both Carroll and Grayson counties have been looking into the disappearance and subsequent death by homicide of Desia Rae George. A cause of death has not be released.
The investigation has continued while police and prosecutors await forensic findings from the state crime lab in Roanoke. Police said a suspect in the case could face a murder charge, depending on the outcome of an autopsy.
Grayson Commonwealth’s Attorney Doug Vaught said it might be November before the medical examiner’s office completes its autopsy report.
The last known person to see George alive before she disappeared in April was her boyfriend, Matthew Steven Jones, 35. He is also the father of a child with her.
Jones has been named a “person of interest” in the case, but has not been charged.
Jones has been held since April 29 in a Randolph County, N.C., jail as the suspect in a bank robbery in Ramseur, N.C. He faces a charge of common law robbery, a federal offense, as well as financial card fraud and unauthorized use of a vehicle.
George’s body was found May 22 in the Brush Creek section of Grayson, near the Wythe County line.
“Since Ms. George’s body was recovered in Grayson County, the investigation and any subsequent charges related to the possible homicide will be under the direction of the Grayson County Sheriff and commonwealth’s attorney,” according to a message about the case from Vaught to news outlets that have been requesting updates about the case.
Vaught said this investigation has been a cooperative effort between the Carroll and Grayson county sheriffs’ offices from the beginning, and the Carroll County Commonwealth’s Attorney will provide guidance and join in the prosecution “in any case should the medical examiner’s report of autopsy support charges of homicide.”
The commonwealth’s attorney did not plan to discuss the case further before a trial, due to the a desire to have “open-minded jurors” listen to the prosecution and the defense’s arguments without preconceived notions about the suspect’s guilt or innocence.
George’s badly decomposed body was identified at the Virginia Department of Forensics Science lab by dental records.
The place where George’s body was found is about 10 miles from George’s home on a secluded rural road.
Because George’s body was recovered in Grayson, law enforcement authorities would bring the charges there, though she lived on the Carroll County side of Fries.
“Since the victim’s body was found in Grayson County, the Code of Virginia (1950), Section 19.2-247 provides that where evidence exists that a homicide has been committed under circumstances which make it unknown where such homicide was committed, the offense shall be amenable to prosecution in the courts of the county where the body of the victim was be found,” Vaught said.
The state forensics lab is also processing a variety of items taken from George’s home in Fries.