Remains discovered during search for Simon Powell

Simon Powell
Simon Powell(WRDW)
Published: Aug. 9, 2022 at 4:19 PM EDT
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WAYNESBORO, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - The Burke County Sheriff’s Office said Tuesday it has found human remains after searching multiple ponds for a man who’s been missing for six years and is presumed dead.

Authorities believe Simon Powell was murdered and that money many have been a motive. The logger was last seen on June 1, 2016, the day before his truck was found burned.

“Today, weeks after draining the pond on Hwy 56 and extensively searching utilizing cadaver dogs, shovels, rakes, etc. we have ended the search for evidence at this location,” Capt. Jimmy Wylds said Tuesday afternoon in a statement.

“During the course of the search we were able to find what we believe to be human remains buried in the muck of the pond. These items have been sent to the GBI crime laboratory for further analysis and possible identification,” Wylds said.

Several arrests have been made in recent weeks after authorities raised the reward for information and placed a renewed focus on the case.

The big breaks in the case followed the early July arrest of Stacey Welch, a woman, who was sought for questioning. She was ultimately arrested on charges murder, kidnapping and armed robbery, according to the Burke County Sheriff’s Office.

Authorities said the search locations were based in information received from Welch.

Other people who’ve been sought in the case include:

  • Crystal Gail Mundy Simmons, who was wanted for questioning in the investigation. She was jailed in Alabama on unrelated charges.
  • Randall Eugene Johnson, who was also wanted for questioning and was located in North Carolina.
  • Mitchell Lanell Lambert, who was arrested in Cummings and charged with murder, kidnapping and armed robbery, according to the Burke County Sheriff’s Office.
Mitchell Lanell Lambert
Mitchell Lanell Lambert(Contributed)
Stacey Welch
Stacey Welch(Contributed)

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