University of Georgia Professor George M. Zinkhan III Prime Suspect in a Triple Murder of Marie E. Bruce, Ben Teague & Thomas Cole Tanner
Horror at UGA in Athens, GA as three adults are murdered and several wounded. A college professor is the prime suspect in the triple shooting murders.
According to police, 57 year old University of Georgia professor George M. Zinkhan III opened fire outside a community theater in Athens, GA and murdered 47 year old Marie E. Bruce (Zinkhan’s wife), 63 year old Ben Teague and 40 year old Thomas Cole Tanner. The shooting occurred at 12:25 p.m. Saturday outside the Athens Community Theater off Prince Avenue near downtown.
Authorities have issued a nationwide alert for George M. Zinkhan and his 2005 red Jeep Liberty.
- George M. Zinkhan III
- 2005 red Jeep Liberty
- Georgia license plate AIX1376
- 57-year-old white male with a goatee
- 6-feet three-inches tall
- 240 pounds
- blue eyes
- last seen wearing a polo shirt and blue shorts
Investigators hunt for professor and for clues as to the motive behind the triple murder.
Capt. Clarence Holeman of the Athens-Clarke County Police Dept. said investigators interviewed 20 witnesses. He said an argument between the suspect, who was well known to the theater group, and an unidentified man immediately preceded the shootings.
According to Holeman, witnesses told police that Zinkhan left the event and returned a few minutes later with two handguns. He fired both guns, Holeman said, and afterward walked away, got in a car and drove off.
Holeman said three cars are registered to Zinkhan, and police were searching for all three. He warned the public to be on alert.
Zinkhan poses “a high level of threat for anyone who comes into contact with him,” said Holeman.
Adams said after the shootings, Zinkhan apparently took both children to another neighbor’s home.
“He said he had an emergency,” Adams said Saturday evening. Police questioned neighbors on the street.
The two children are now in police custody, Holeman said.
We have had a tragedy this weekend that has impacted Athens and the entire University of Georgia community. We are saddened by the shooting that took place Saturday, and our thoughts and prayers are with the families and loved ones of all those who have been affected. As we grieve, we are determined to move forward.
UGA ALERT: Police are still looking for George M. Zinkhan III, 57 years of age, 6-feet three-inches tall, 240 pounds, blue eyes, white male with a goatee, with light brown hair and some graying. He was last seen wearing a polo shirt and blue shorts with a backpack, and driving a 2005 reddish Jeep Liberty with Georgia tag AIX 1376. If you know his location or see him call 911. Please do not call 911 seeking information. Please do not call UGA Police asking questions. Only call to provide information that you may have regarding this matter. Police continue to urge members of the University community to use your best judgment in taking precautions while this suspect remains at large.
Athens-Clarke County police said they have local, regional and national alerts out for George Zinkhan, 57, an endowed marketing professor at the school’s Terry College of Business.
Police said Zinkhan has relatives in Texas and owns a home in Amsterdam, Netherlands, and a nationwide lookout was issued for the red 2005 Jeep Liberty Zinkhan was driving when he was last seen after the shootings Saturday.