Cherokee County Authorities Working Triple Homicide Monday Morning / UPDATE Suspect in Custody / Victims Identified

38-year-old Donnie Lee Abernathy (WEIS Radio)

WEIS Radio

Cherokee County authorities are currently investigating a triple homicide, which occurred just after midnight. Cherokee County Sheriff Jeff Shaver says three people are dead and one was taken to the hospital.

That incident took place around 12:30 Monday morning at a location on County Road 664, located in the Round Mountain community. The area in which the incident occurred is extremely isolated; from County Road 48, you go one-and-a-half miles to County Road 664 – then travel just over a mile on a one-lane dirt road to the site.

As authorities responded to the scene the suspect’s vehicle sideswiped a deputy’s truck and a chase ensued, ending in Sand Rock when the suspect wreck.

At that point 38 year old Donnie Lee Abernathy was taken into custody; he was first treated at a local hospital, then transferred to the Cherokee County Detention Center, where he was charged with Capital Murder , First Degree Kidnapping, with First Degree Criminal Mischief and with Attempting to Elude.

A female who was abducted from the residence was also in the vehicle when the crash took place; she was taken to a local hospital, where she was treated and released.

According to Coroner Jeremy Deaton the victims have been identified as 71 year old Sylvia Sue Duffe, Clara Lee Edwards, age 68 and Pamela Collette O’Shel, 49, all of Centre.

Officers from all local police agencies, the Cherokee County Major Crimes Unit and Alabama Law Enforcement Agency responded to the scene. The JSU Center for Applied Forensics has been processing the crime scene.

The investigation into the matter is being headed up by the Major Crimes Unit.