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Perry Police Arrest Man For Murder After Witness Sees Woman Being Dragged

Melissa Facebook Post
Billy Gear
Posted at 12:31 PM, Jan 07, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-21 12:04:11-05

PERRY, FL (WTXL) -- A man has been arrested for murder after a witness called 911 to say that a woman was being dragged into a wooded area near the Wal‐Mart Super Center Wednesday night.

A K-9 search team was called to the area and was able to quickly find a woman's body completely concealed by leaves, limbs and debris.

Billy Lee Gear, 36, was seen leaving the wooded area and was detained and taken to the Police Department for questioning, said police.

Gear was charged with First Degree Murder and taken to the Taylor County Jail. He is accused of killing 23-year-old Melissa Darnell. According to police, the two had been in a romantic relationship and had a child together.

On the victim's Facebook page she posted that Gear had kidnapped her two month old baby in December. 

At this time police were unable to confirm if they were investigating Gear on kidnapping charges before Darnell's body was discovered.