Jeffrey Hazelwood, the Georgia man accused of killing two teenagers behind a Roswell Publix store earlier this month, allegedly admitted the killings to a detective. He allegedly left the victims in a “sexually explicit fashion,” according to an Atlanta medical examiner.
New York Daily News reports that Hazelwood, 20, is charged with killing and robbing two 17-year-old high school students, Natalie Henderson and Carter Davis, on August 1. The teens were behind the Publix supermarket on Woodstock Road when Hazelwood allegedly followed them, shot them both in the head, and stole a debit card and jumper cables.
The teens’ bodies were found around 6 a.m. on August 1, when a delivery driver found them lying in a parking lot behind the store. Around 48 hours later, Hazelwood was charged with murder, robbery, and several other related charges after detectives interviewed witnesses, reviewed surveillance footage, and put together missing pieces. Shortly after the crime happened, Hazelwood reportedly drove to a nearby gas station, still wearing a mask, and bought gas with Natalie’s debit card.
Police have been mum about the motive of the killing, including if and how the suspect knew the victims. Yet, a Fulton County Medical Examiner autopsy report, released this week, noted that the victims were both stripped of their clothing. Natalie was naked and “posed in a sexually explicit fashion, with her legs ‘spread eagle.” Carter was lying beside her, with his arm stretched, in only a pair of shorts.
During Hazelwood’s probable cause hearing on Friday at the Fulton County court, Roswell police Detective Jennifer Bennett, the only witness at the hearing, became distraught while describing how Hazelwood allegedly told her the details of the murders.
According to court records, Hazelwood revealed to Bennett that he followed the teens while they were both in Natalie’s SUV. He even climbed on top of the Publix roof to watch them. He then approached them when the vehicle parked and tried to enter it, but Carter pushed him away.
Hazelwood told Bennett he was scared of Carter, and hit him in the head with a gun, then shot him. Then, he allegedly forced Natalie out of the car and demanded she remove her clothing. He reportedly sexually assaulted her with his hands, then forced her to bend over and place her hands on the hood of her car. After spanking her, he shot her in the head. He now faces an additional charge of sexual battery.
Bennett also testified that Hazelwood said he went to a gas station after the shootings, wearing a white Guy Fawkes mask, and bought gas with Natalie’s debit card. He returned to the crime scene afterwards and stole Carter’s jumper cables.
Police arrested Hazelwood around 48 hours after the shootings. They found the mask still inside his car, as well as a revolver that they believe was used to kill the teens. According to Bennett, Hazelwood stole the gun from his grandfather. Bennett said,
“Inside the vehicle we did find a V for Vendetta mask. That was actually observed prior to getting the search warrant. We could see it through the window. Um, we could also see a small, red gas can that was in the back seat, that we had seen at the gas station. He filled up his car with the small gas can….Pursuant to the search warrant, we also recovered a 9mm firearm out of the back of the car.”
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that Hazelwood remained quiet throughout the court hearing. Wearing a navy blue jail jumpsuit, he maintained his composure while sitting in the court room. During cross examination, Hazelwood’s attorney said that his client suffered from both bipolar disorder and schizophrenia, which caused him to “black out” during the crime.
After the hearing, Jeffery Hazelwood returned to the Fulton County Jail, where he’s being held without bond. Magistrate Judge Karen Woodson scheduled his next court date for September 9, where a grand jury will hear the evidence. Watch the preliminary hearing below.
[Photo by/Brant Sanderlin/Atlanta Journal-Constitution/AP Images]