Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Gary Hilton Charged in Meredith Emerson Death... Is He a Serial Killer? Update 3-15-08


Georgia Bureau of Investigation's fear came to pass. Gary Michael Hilton (age 61) led authorities to the body of Meredith Emerson. Hilton has been charged with Kidnapping with Bodily Injury. Charges will likely be upgraded to murder. Investigators found Emerson's body Monday evening in a forest about 60 miles north of Atlanta. The body was found in the 25,000 acre Dawson Forest Wildlife Management Area which is about 30 miles south of the state park where Meredith went hiking on New Year's Day. Meredith was 24. Authorities are trying to determine whether Hilton may have been involved in at least three other killings in two neighboring states.

Gary Hilton was caught after surveillance video captured Hilton's image as he tried to use one of Emerson's credit cards at a bank in Canton, Georgia. On the day Hilton was seen with Meredith, it is believed that he was wearing a yellow jacket believed to belong to another murder victim. (John Bryant)
Update 1-9-08: Meredith was found decapitated after her death. According to the autopsy, she was likely killed January 4, said Lee Darragh, district attorney for Hall and Dawson counties. That is when Gary Michael Hilton apparently made a phone call from a pay phone at a convenience store in Cumming, Georgia. (Emerson's black leather wallet containing her identification cards were found in a trash bin outside that store. Ella, Emerson's Labrador mix, was found wandering near that same store. Charges against Hilton were upgraded to murder. Hilton led investigators to her body in exchange for prosecutors' agreeing to not pursue the death penalty according to Union County District Attorney Stan Gunter.
Update 1-10-08: Gary Michael Hilton is a "prime suspect" in the slaying of Cheryl Dunlap, say investigators in Leon County, Florida. Her decapitated body was found December 19 in Apalachicola National Forest. Hilton was in the area at the time of Dunlap's disappearance.
Update 2-1-08: Hilton plead guilty and was sentenced to life in prison for Meredith's death. He will not be eligible for parole until he is 91 years old. "He will most likely die in prison and most certainly never see the light of day again," said Prosecutor Lee Darragh. Emerson's family apparently agrees with the sentence.
Update 3-15-08: Hilton is also charged with the death of hiker Cheryl Dunlap in Florida. He was indicted on charges of murder, kidnapping, and two counts of grand theft. Hilton, 61, is already serving life in prison for the murder of Georgia hiker Meredith Emerson. He would be elgible for parole at age 91. Florida will seek the death penalty for Hilton

Update 2-22-10: To comment or update this particular story, you will need to submit the comment to legalpub@legalpub.net.

38 comments:

Anonymous said...

Sure looks like he is...

colleency said...

What a sad story this has been. I'm glad they charged him, and he led them to the body - at least her family has that small degree of closure.

Her godmother was on tv the other day; when asked how the family was holding up, she said they have been so touched by the kindness of friends and strangers, and so impressed with the compassion shown by even the media, that they are ever-more certain there is more good than evil in the world.

Anonymous said...

that scumbag murderer should get the death penalty. (i never thought i'd feel that way about anyone)

i live in transylvania county, nc (where the older couple were last seen hiking, and where they found that lady's body near their vehicle)
and it is so scary... to think that this guy or maybe some other serial killer (?) has been roaming around here... looking for victims to rob and kill.

i am a small female... and i never go out hiking alone- for fear of just this sort of thing.

meredith was (obviously) a strong and brave woman... it is such a shame that this had to happen.

my condolences go out to her family and loved ones.
so sad.

just goes to show, that once again, the human animal is the most dangerous and deadly.
may he fry in the chair and/or rot in hell.

donniep said...

So sad. I had a bad feeling that this would be the outcome.

Anonymous said...

When it is all said and done, he'll end up as a serial killer as infamous as any other preying on people in several states.

Ms Calabaza said...

So sad! I was hoping there would be another outcome in this story. Darn.

Joe said...

This guy is scum. J.J. don't even start down that path...

Anonymous said...

Is he related to the infamous Hilton family fortune?

jess said...

This was so about money. He killed these folks, in my opinion, to use their credit cards etc. He will be revealed as a killer and a thief!


Jess

Anonymous said...

Psycho!

Viper said...

I believe Gary Hilton is likely to give a full confession. This is not based on any facts, just a hunch. In the meantime, Peggy Bailey, Emerson's godmother and apparent spokeswoman for the family throughout this tragedy said that "We are glad she's found. This brings some sort of closure for us".

God bless this poor family. May Meredith rest in peace.

Anonymous said...

Thank God for surveillance cameras!

Anonymous said...

What was so unusual about this man that others remembered he and Meredith chatting?

Anonymous said...

I simply hate reading stories like these before I go to sleep :(

nikie said...

I am glad for the family because they have closure. But what is this world coming to. It is a scary place. The fact that he decapitated her shows how sick he is. He should get the death penalty. It makes me worry for my little girl.

Lee said...

Dirtbag. Not even human!

Legal Pub said...

Update 1-9-08: Meredith was found decapitated after her death. According to the autopsy, she was likely killed January 4, said Lee Darragh, district attorney for Hall and Dawson counties. That is when Gary Michael Hilton apparently made a phone call from a pay phone at a convenience store in Cumming, Georgia. (Emerson's black leather wallet containing her identification cards were found in a trash bin outside that store. Ella, Emerson's Labrador mix, was found wandering near that same store. Charges against Hilton were upgraded to murder. Hilton led investigators to her body in exchange for prosecutors' agreeing to not pursue the death penalty according to Union County District Attorney Stan Gunter.

Anonymous said...

the prosecutors' know what they are doing, he will get the death penalty for sure, I know deep in my heart the this is not the only case he will be charge for, he is a serial killer.

Anonymous said...

I agree, he is likely a serial killer. The Supreme court is likely to throw out the death penalty any way, so no loss in agreeing to this for this crime.

Anonymous said...

Poor girl may have suffered for days...

Anonymous said...

Thanks for all the information!

I think I agree with Lee, this guy is hardly human.

Anonymous said...

no death penalty????????absurd....punishments should mirror crimes which would lead to reduction in crime....instead the courts would allow this piece of garbage to live out his life supported by the taxpayers???????It is no surprise that the society is becoming more violent by the day.

Anonymous said...

This guy deserves worse than to fry, stuff like this just tears me up. A little while ago in Tallahassee Fl, a sunday school teacher/ nursing student was taken into the apalachicola forrest and decapitated, the killer has not yet been founf, but her credit card was used three times. To think that it isn't even safe to go hiking with your dog. This is obsurd. Words can't even describe my feelings toward all of this....

Anonymous said...

He deserves biblical punishment. Vermin like this bring out the most base instinct in me. Too bad we can't stone him in a public arena and charge admission. The proceeds could go into a fund for his victims. I would gladly pay $1000 bucks or more to throw a stone at this parasite. I can't think of anything bad enough for this murdering weasel.....maybe draw and quarter him. I am full of anger toward this monster.

Hillary P. said...

The Supreme Court will likely declare the death penalty cruel and unsual punishment. The next administration will appoint progressive thinkers to the court. Thus this form of archaic justice will be just a distant memory.

Criminals should get life if they are incapable of reform. But two wrongs never make a right.


Hillary P.

Anonymous said...

Hillary, you are a bag of wind!

J.J. said...

No. Hillary is right. Our country is based on Christian principals. As such, the death penalty must be abolished even for poor misguided souls like Gary Hilton.

J.J.

Legal Pub said...

Update 1-10-08: Gary Michael Hilton is a "prime suspect" in the slaying of Cheryl Dunlap, say investigators in Leon County, Florida. Her decapitated body was found December 19 in Apalachicola National Forest. Hilton was in the area at the time of Dunlap's disappearance.

Anonymous said...

I'm guessing that the progressive thinkers that Hillary writes about are the same ones who think that a women should have the right to kill her unborn child. Any child who makes it out of the womb, however, can grow up to be a serial killer and the same progressive thinkers want to force society to care for the murderer until he/she dies a natural death.

Anonymous said...

Kill the babies not the murderers? I think babies should get life and murderers should get death!

Anonymous said...

Step by step reformers will abolish injustice of the death penalty!

Anonymous said...

Legal Pubmeister, you were one of the first ones to suspect that he was a serial killer. Looking like your profile was correct.

If you are not profiling killers for a living, you ought to be! The good guys could use your services big time!

Anonymous said...

I better lock up the Cherios!

Viper said...

I think your breakfast cereal is safe. He is an alleged serial killer not a cereal killer.

Legal Pub said...

Update 2-1-08: Hilton plead guilty and was sentenced to life in prison for Meredith's death. He will not be eligible for parole until he is 91 years old. "He will most likely die in prison and most certainly never see the light of day again," said Prosecutor Lee Darragh. Emerson's family apparently agrees with the sentence.

Anonymous said...

Pure Evil!

Anonymous said...

Gary is pure scum!

Legal Pub said...

Update 3-15-08: Hilton is also charged with the death of hiker Cheryl Dunlap in Florida. He was indicted on charges of murder, kidnapping, and two counts of grand theft. Hilton, 61, is already serving life in prison for the murder of Georgia hiker Meredith Emerson. He would be elgible for parole at age 91. Florida will seek the death penalty for Hilton