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GBI seeks help in 1996 cold-case slaying of rural minister

May 4, 2019

DOUGLAS, Ga. (AP) — Investigators are seeking new tips in the cold-case slaying of a Georgia minister who was fatally shot at his rural church nearly 23 years ago.

The Georgia Bureau of Investigation posted a request on social media sites asking the public for leads in the June 1, 1996, killing of the Rev. James Hand in Jeff Davis County.

Hand was pastor of the Full Gospel Church of Snipesville, a rural community of about 40 people in southeast Georgia. The Florida Times-Union reported the 54-year-old minister’s wife found him dead on top of the church’s social hall, where he had been working on the roof.

Authorities said Hand was shot twice in the back and once in the head.

The GBI asks anyone with information to call its office in Douglas.