The Case of Bo Dukes, Tara Grinstead
Tara Grinstead, the first inmate to face trial in the Bo Dukes case, was a student in his class many years before. The trial details drew both new pain and closure to the community. Bo, who had a history with gang involvement was charged with concealing the death and hindering an arrest of a criminal. The evidence presented at the trial revealed that Bo had lied to investigators by lying about the identity of the killer and the way the body was burned.
However, the trial also revealed that the police had registered the names of Bo and Ryan since 2005. These names were mentioned twice in a 2005 GBI report and once in an interview with Ryan in 2008. At the time of the trial, the Special Agent in Charge of the GBI took the stand and admitted that he had not looked at the glove. This was later confirmed when the defendants’ DNA matched that of Bo and Ryan.
The judge ruled in favor of the prosecution and convicted Dukes of six counts of felony criminal mischief and two counts of concealing the death of another. The other two defendants were charged with murder and obstruction of justice. The trial of these two men will continue. Both men will stand trial in April. Both men will be affected by the verdict of the court. It is not clear what Grinstead’s family will do.
Although the investigation was incomplete, the GBI has interviewed 200 people. In total, no one has been cleared in the case. It has attracted widespread attention. In less than 24 hours, hundreds of people flooded the small town in the deep South to set up a command center, establish tip lines and walk the terrain. The massive community-led search yielded no conclusive evidence. The investigation began with a focus on Grinstead’s past life. Police found out that Grinstead was a former Army Ranger. Investigators later discovered that Grinstead was being burglarized by a former student.
Bo’s friend Ryan was a key witness in the case. Bo spoke to GBI Agent Jason Shoudel during the interview about Grinstead’s disappearance and the subsequent days. Ryan instructed Bo to burn Grinstead’s body. The two of them lived together in a mobile home, where they left pornographic material. The GBI had no other way to determine the truth. Despite the horrific details, Bo was eventually found guilty of Grinstead’s murder and is currently serving a 25 year sentence.
Bo Dukes’ trial was held in Wilcox County, Georgia, and the jury is still deciding on the next steps. Bo Dukes was convicted of lying to the GBI, and concealing Grinstead’s death. The jury is still deciding. Bo Dukes is sentenced to a maximum of 25 years in prison Although Bo Dukes pleaded not guilty to the charges, the GBI determined that he “knowingly” lied about his crimes to investigators.