Woman, 27, arrested in murder case

COVINGTON — The Georgia Bureau of Investigation has announced the arrest of a suspect in the murder of Alvin Hall, whose body was found in a burning vehicle near the Rockdale/Newton County line on Dec. 30, and they are seeking a second suspect.

Candice Cadasha Pope, 27, of 8882 Seneca Road, Palmetto, has been charged by the Newton County Sheriff's Office with murder, felony murder, making false statements and hindering the apprehension or punishment of a criminal in connection with the case. She is being held without bond in the Newton County Detention Center.

GBI spokesman John Bankhead said murder warrants have also been issued for a second suspect. Brandon Hambrick, 18, is also sought in connection with the murder.

Pope was arrested on Jan. 21, but Bankhead said that information was withheld from the public in hopes of apprehending Hambrick.

"We haven't got him, so the decision was made to do the news release yesterday," Bankhead said Tuesday. "There is a murder warrant out and we are definitely looking for him."

Hambrick is described as a black man, 5 feet, 11 inches tall, and weighing approximately 180 pounds. He is known to frequent the Scottdale area of DeKalb County.

Hall's vehicle was discovered on McGiboney Lane in Newton County, off Spring Road near the Rockdale County line, about 10:45 p.m. when the Newton County Fire Service was dispatched to a vehicle fire. As the fire was being extinguished, authorities located the body of the 44-year-old Atlanta man.

"The investigation has determined that Hall was last seen alive earlier that evening of Dec. 30 in the area of Empire Park in Atlanta. Newton County Sheriff's Office investigators and the GBI are in contact with the Atlanta Police Department regarding this case," Bankhead said in a previous interview with the Citizen.

It had been earlier speculated that Hall's murder might be connected with two other murders that occurred around the same time in which bodies were discovered in vehicles, but Bankhead said investigators no longer think that to be the case. The body of Dewayne Louder, 26, of Greenville had been found in a vehicle in a rural area of Troup County on Jan. 3, and the body of D'Anta Williams, 30, of Morrow was found in the trunk of his vehicle at Perkerson Park in southwest Atlanta on Jan 2.

"There is definitely no connection with Troup County and at this point, there is no link to the Atlanta case," Bankhead said.

Bankhead said Pope was known both to the victim and the second suspect. He said the cause of death and the motive in the case are being withheld "due to investigative value."

As to where Hall was actually murdered, Bankhead said, "The venue right now is in Newton County as that's where the body was found."

The NCSO and the GBI are soliciting the public's help in locating Hambrick. Anyone with information on his whereabouts is asked to call the NCSO at 678-625-1429 or the GBI Tip Line at 1-800-597-TIPS (8477). Also, tips can be given anonymously through www.newtonsheriffga.org by clicking on the anonymous tip link and following instructions. Those who want a response from an investigator are asked to leave contact information.