Davis said he did not know why it took pressure from Floyd County authorities to enter the two homes in the Ranger community and locate the bodies of the Blaylocks, Bradley and Peeler’s 10-month-old daughter Jerri Jones.
In an interview with the Calhoun Times Wednesday morning, the sheriff said he had not seen the story in the Atlanta paper and that he would have to look into their allegations.
Peeler said her ex-husband Jerry William Jones had called her in Oregon the afternoon of Jan. 7 and told her that he had killed her parents, her half-sister and her daughter and kidnapped her three older daughters, Brittney Phelps, 10, Brandy Jones, 4 and Tammy Jones, 3.
Davis said a deputy visited the home at 3:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 7, but did not enter.
It took Peeler nearly eight hours that day to persuade Gordon County sheriff’s officials to enter her parents’ home and look for bodies, recordings of her conversations with authorities show.
Later that night, Gordon County deputies went to the Pack Road home of Peeler’s parents in Ranger after Peeler called Jones’ sister and Floyd County 911.
Sheriff’s deputies found the first of four victims of the killing spree about 11:30 p.m. on Jan. 7 and confirmed Jerry Jones’ claim that he had fled with Peeler’s other daughters. The delay in discovering the crimes gave Jones at least an eight-hour head start in his flight, which triggered a Levi’s Call alert in Georgia and a nationwide Amber Alert.
Jones, 31, the Blaylock’s former son-in-law, is charged with the murders, as well as the kidnapping of Brittany Phelps, 10, his former step-daughter and his two daughters, Brandy Jones, 4, and Tammy Jones, 3.
Jones, 31, shot himself following a police chase that ended just over the Tennessee line on the night of Jan. 8, more than 24 hours after Peeler’s first call to Gordon County authorities. He is in a Tennessee hospital and is expected to recover from the wounds. He faces murder and kidnapping charges. The three sisters were found unharmed in the Ford Explorer Jones had been driving.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported that during at least four pleading phone calls with Gordon County 911 operators, Peeler, who was calling from Oregon, was told that deputies had visited the property and found nothing wrong, was refused the opportunity to file kidnap charges and ultimately told to file a report when she returned from her trip to the Pacific Northwest.
Only when she spoke with the 911 supervisor about 10:30 p.m. did she make a breakthrough, according to the Gordon County 911 tapes obtained Tuesday by the Atlanta newspaper.
Gordon County authorities declined to release the tapes when requested by the Calhoun Times last week. Clent Harris, administrative services officer with the Gordon County Sheriff’s Department, told the Calhoun Times that it is standing policy not to release transcripts of 911 calls or radio transmissions while an investigation is on-going.
Gordon County officials have declined to release any information about the possible whereabouts of Jones and the three girls during the time between the killings and his capture near Chattanooga more than 24 hours later.
Davis told the Calhoun Times that Peeler’s initial call on the afternoon of Jan. 7 had only requested a welfare check on her parents. He said Peeler had not told authorities of the killings until the 10:30 p.m. phone call.
But information on the tapes substantially indicates that Peeler told officials at 3 p.m. that Jones had told her of the killings when he called her from a grocery store in Rome, where he and Peeler had lived at one time.
Finally, about 10:30 p.m., Peeler talked with the Gordon County shift supervisor, who sent out deputies who eventually found the bodies of Peeler’s parents, Tommy and Nola Blaylock; her half sister, Georgia Bradley; and Peeler and Jones’ 10-month-old daughter, Jerri