DeKalb County

Death of man found at gas station now being investigated as murder

DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. — The death of a man found at a gas station is being investigated as a murder, police confirmed to Channel 2 Action News.

The man's body was found in a car at the BP and Circle K off Panola Road on Wednesday morning.

Police told Channel 2's Steve Gehlbach at the scene there were no signs of shooting or obvious injury. Investigators now say the cause of death appears to be blunt force trauma.

The victim has been identified as William Stewart, 34.


Police say Stewart worked overnights and his wife became worried when she couldn't reach him. She tracked Stewart's phone to the station and found his body.

"I was behind the counter and she came inside and screaming, telling me, 'My husband died, can you call someone, can you call someone?'” a store clerk told Gehlbach.

The clerk, who didn't want us to use his name or show his face, said the car had been parked outside before 6 a.m. Stewart's body wasn't found until closer to 8 a.m.

"I just looked in the window and guy was sleeping … that’s what I thought. And there was blood," he said.

There are cameras inside the store, but there are no cameras outside to observe the parking lot.

“I could see there was blood on his pants, blood on the arm rest. I know that that’s not a natural occurrence,” a man who works in the business next door said.

The man did not want to be identified but said he tried to save Stewart, but it was too late.

“Put my hand on his chest to do a slight compression to see if anything comes back at me. I didn’t get anything,” he said.

The worker said it appears the victim was beaten to death: “It’s disturbing, to say the least. It makes you wonder."

DeKalb police have not said what may have led to the killing, and so far, have not released any information about potential suspects.

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