New Details in Murder of Taylor County Woman

Billy Gear
Posted at 11:14 AM, Jan 22, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-22 11:14:00-05

PERRY, FL (WTXL) - New details are being released after a Taylor County man was indicted for murder and now kidnapping.

According to the State Attorney's Office, 35-year-old Billy Gear kidnapped 23-year-old Melissa Darnell on January 6th. That's when Gear inflicted "crushing trauma to her neck", leading to hear death according to the grand jury.

According to police in Perry, a concerned citizen called them to report a man, later identified as Gear, dragging a woman into the woods near the Wal-Mart Super Center.

Officers found Darnell's body covered by leaves, limbs and debris. Police arrested Gear a short time later.

Police said Darnell and Gear had previously been in a relationship and had a child together.

Gear was indicted by a grand jury yesterday on first degree murder and kidnapping charges.