Cobb County

Man magnet fishing reels in new evidence in murder of Cobb couple lured by Craigslist ad

TELFAIR COUNTY, Ga. — A man on a magnet fishing trip uncovered new evidence in the 2015 murder of a Cobb County couple lured by a car ad they saw on Craigslist.

Bud and June Runion traveled to Telfair County to purchase his dream car, a 1966 Ford Mustang, that they saw listed on Craigslist. Instead, investigators say the couple were shot to death in a robbery set up by the suspects.

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Last week, a man went on a magnet fishing in Horse Creek in McRae-Helena and pulled out of the creek a .22 caliber rifle, according to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation. Two days later in the same area, the fisherman found a bag with the couple’s drivers’ licenses and credit cards.

The GBI says a cell phone that may have belonged to the Runions was also in the bag.

Agents got warrants for a Telfair County home and searched the property on April 17 and April 19, where they found more evidence. The GBI did not say what further evidence was sent to their crime lab for tests.


Channel 2 Action News followed the disappearance and search for the couple in 2015. Family members told Channel 2 that they first became worried about Bud and June’s safety when they didn’t arrive home to babysit their grandchildren.

“We are worried that someone might have done something bad and taken advantage of them,” daughter Brittany Patterson said.

Four days after their disappearance, police found their bodies, along with the couple’s SUV, in a pond in Telfair County. Officials identified the suspect as Ronnie Jay Towns, who was later indicted for the couple’s murder and armed robbery.

Officials interviewed Towns and learned he was the last person to talk to the couple on the phone before they disappeared. It’s unclear if the phone found in the creek this month is one of the phones involved in that call.

Court documents show that Towns’ trial is scheduled to start in August.

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