Man acquitted in Tara Grinstead’s murder facing six new charges in her death

BEN HILL COUNTY, Ga. — Ryan Duke, the man acquitted in the death of a Georgia school teacher and beauty queen, is facing six new charges in the case, according to the Macon Telegraph.

Duke was acquitted last month in the death of Tara Grinstead, who vanished from her home in south Georgia in 2005.

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Duke had been on trial for Grinstead’s murder, but was ultimately charged with concealing her death. Duke pegged the murder on his former friend and classmate, Bo Dukes, who is already in prison on charges related to the case.

Duke confessed to Grinstead’s murder in 2017, but recanted during the trial, saying Dukes committed the murder and he was afraid to reveal the truth while Dukes was not in prison. Duke did admit to helping Dukes dispose of the body by burning it in a pecan orchard in Ben Hill County.


On Friday, prosecutors in Ben Hill County presented six new charges against Duke, including concealing the death of another, hindering apprehension or punishment of a criminal, concealment of facts and tampering with evidence.

Though Duke has already been convicted of concealing a death in Irwin County, he can still face the same charge in Ben Hill County.

He was sentenced to ten years in the Irwin County case.

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Dukes is facing charges he concealed Grinstead’s death in Ben Hill County, with the trial set to start as early as the end of June. That indictment alleges that Dukes helped conceal Grinstead’s death and that he hindered Duke’s arrest.