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Trial to start in slaying of Georgia teacher Tara Grinstead

Tara Grinstead
Posted at 11:12 AM, May 09, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-09 11:12:34-04

OCILLA, Ga. (AP) — More than 16 years after a popular high school teacher vanished in rural Georgia, a man is about to stand trial for her murder. Opening statements are scheduled for Monday in the trial of Ryan Duke.

He's charged with murdering Tara Grinstead, a 30-year-old teacher and former beauty queen whose disappearance in October 2005 remained a mystery for more than a decade.

Duke was arrested in 2017, after confessing to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation that he killed Grinstead in her home and burned her body to ash in a pecan orchard. Duke's defense attorneys say he made a false confession under the influence of drugs. Another man, Bo Dukes, was convicted in 2019 for helping burn Grinstead's body.