Stryker

STRYKER

CUMMING, Ga. — A Dawsonville man suspected in the death of a Dahlonega woman now faces an additional charge of armed robbery.

Austin Todd Stryker has been charged with armed robbery at a Dollar General store off Ga. 400 in Lumpkin County last July, according to the Lumpkin County Sheriff’s Office. 

Stryker is accused of killing 21-year old Hannah Bender, whose body was discovered in a shallow grave off Parks Road in Forsyth County in late September.

The 22-year old Stryker had been held in Pennsylvania after turning himself in to authorities early this month, according to the GBI. 

According to Lumpkin County Sheriff Stacy Jarrard, Stryker was placed in the custody of the Lumpkin County Sheriff’s Office Oct. 15. 

Because the case spans multiple counties, Stryker may not remain in Lumpkin, however; it will be determined by the District Attorney where he will stay, Jarrard said.

At a press conference following the discovery of Bender’s body, Jarrard told reporters that authorities believe Bender was killed at a Lumpkin County campsite. The search for her body involved Lumpkin, Dawson and Forsyth county agencies. 

Bender’s mother had reported her missing on Sept. 19 after not hearing from her for several days. 

Five other suspects have been arrested in connection with Bender’s death. 

Elizabeth Donaldson, 21, of Dawson County, was arrested Sept. 25, the day Bender’s body was discovered. She has been charged with tampering with evidence. Donaldson and Stryker are reportedly in a relationship but it is not clear whether the two are married or engaged. 

Jerry Harper, 78, was arrested in Dawson County, charged with theft by receiving stolen property and driving while license suspended or revoked. The GBI has taken out warrants for Harper for “concealment of dead body” and “tampering with evidence” in Forsyth County. He is being held without bond.

Isaac Huff, 18 and Dylan Reid, 19 were also arrested in Dawson on Sept. 30 by the GBI. 

Huff has been charged with concealing a death, a felony, and is accused of allowing another person to keep Bender’s body on his property. He is being held without bond.

Reid has been charged with one felony count of tampering with evidence and concealing a death. He is accused of knowingly concealing evidence in connection with Bender’s murder, concealing her death and hindering the discover of her body. Reid is being held without bond.

Lumpkin County resident Bailey Diane Williams, 21, was arrested Oct. 1, charged with tampering with evidence. She was later released on a $10,200 bond.

Authorities have stated that more arrests are possible as the investigation continues.

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