Debbie Collier’s Disappearance and Death: What We Know

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Athens woman Debbie Collier, found dead in Habersham County.

The sudden disappearance and death of Athens woman Debbie Collier has shocked people across Georgia and the nation.

Details about discovery of the woman’s body in the woods in Habersham County have raised questions about her disappearance and death.

While there aren’t many concrete investigative details surrounding the woman’s first disappearance, here’s everything we know about the case:

Who was Debbie Collier?

Deborrah Todd Collier was a 59-year-old resident of Athens, according to police.

Police identified Collier’s adult daughter as Amanda Bearden. She told investigators that her mother had no history of mental illness and that she had a “bad back,” indicating to law enforcement that she could not walk far on foot.

Carriage House Realty, Inc. in Athens hired a person named Debbie Collier as Front Office Manager, according to the website. The company’s social media had not publicly acknowledged Debbie Collier’s death on September 22.

Debbie Collier seems to have shared one Facebook account with her husband, Steve Collier.

Collier was a Georgia Bulldogs football fan, according to the public Facebook posts.

When did Debbie Collier disappear?

Collier was reported missing from Athens on September 10. Her daughter, Amanda Bearden, told investigators that her mother’s car was in the shop at the time and that she left home in a rented Chrysler Pacifica SUV with only her driver’s license and a debit card. .

Based on the Habersham County Sheriff’s Office incident report, Athens-Clarke County police received assistance from Habersham deputies on Sept. 11.

When, where was Debbie Collier found?

On the afternoon of Sept. 11, Habersham County deputies and Tallulah Falls police officers responded to the area on Ga. Highway 15 in Clarkesville, where Collier’s car was reported.

A police officer found a car parked in an apparent “pulloff” that led to an old logging road outside Ga. Highway 15 on the northbound side, according to an incident report.

A Tallulah Falls police officer told investigators the car was at the same location around 1 p.m. 17.00 on 10 September. In the investigative report, the officer said it is common for cars to stop in the area.

A memorial sits on the side of the road where the Athens woman's body was found.

A memorial sits on the side of the road where the Athens woman’s body was found. (FOX 5 Atlanta)

The car was unlocked and empty, according to the investigative report.

Law enforcement called Georgia State Patrol Aviation for assistance.

How did investigators use satellite radio to find Debbie Collier’s car?

Investigators in Habersham County where Debbie Collier's body was discovered.

Investigators in Habersham County where Debbie Collier’s body was discovered.

An individual working for Sirius XM contacted Habersham County Sheriff’s Office investigators on behalf of Athens-Clarke County police regarding the location of Debbie Collier’s car.

The satellite radio provider said a signal was coming from Ga. Highway 15 and Victory Home Lane in Clarkesville.

Not all cars with Sirius XM is capable of being tracked by law enforcement.

Is Debbie Collier’s Disappearance, Death Drug Related?

A Habersham County Sheriff’s Office report said the investigation indicated the incident was drug-related.

It is not known what kind of drugs were involved and which parties bought, sold or traded drugs.

What was the cause of Debbie Collier’s death?

The GBI crime lab is analyzing Debbie Collier’s body and items from her car. Investigators’ findings are still pending.


Investigators discovered her partially burned, naked and “clutching a small tree,” according to police documents.

Downhill from the scene, investigators found a blue tarp with burn marks and “a naked female lying on her back clutching a small tree with her right hand,” according to the incident report.

Investigators believe whoever was responsible tried to burn the body. Her remains were “apparently burned with what appeared to be charring of her abdomen.”

Investigators said there is no indication that Debbie Collier’s disappearance and death are related to kidnapping or suicide.

State law enforcement did not issue an alert about Debbie Collier’s disappearance, as sometimes happens in active kidnapping situations.

Collier’s daughter told investigators her mother did not have a history of suicidal tendencies.

How is Venmo connected to Debbie Collier’s death?

Athens-Clarke County Police Department investigators told Habersham County Sheriff’s Office deputies that the last known message from Debbie Collier was a Venmo transfer from an account belonging to Steve Collier to Amanda Bearden, who police identify as Collier’s daughter.

The message with the transfer says: “They won’t let me go love you, there’s a key to the house in the blue flower pot by the door.”

FOX 5 Atlanta obtained the original Venmo transfer from Steve Collier to Amanda Bearden.

FOX 5 Atlanta obtained the original Venmo transfer from Steve Collier to Amanda Bearden.

FOX 5 Atlanta obtained a photo of a Venmo transfer from Steve Collier to Amanda Bearden.

Police said the transfer was for $2,385.

Based on past transactions, Debbie Collier may have had access to the Venmo account.

Is there a suspect or person of interest in Debbie Collier’s death?

Investigators had not shared information about a suspect or person of interest as of September 22.

On Wednesday, the Habersham County Sheriff’s Office said investigators executed multiple search warrants at locations directly linked to the victim.

Habersham County investigators also interviewed “those closest to the victim.”

“After receiving findings and reports from all submissions and subpoenaed records, sheriff’s investigators are seeking to identify persons of interest for further follow-up and interview,” a statement from the sheriff’s office said.

Anyone with information is asked to call Habersham County Sheriff’s Office detectives Cale Garrison at 706-839-0559 or George Cason at 706-839-0560.

FOX News Digital contributed to this report.

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