Arrests Made in Lavonia, GA Homicide Investigation

August 11, 2016

Lavonia, GA – On Thursday, August 11, 2016, Rayfondia Nashon Craft, age 45, of Hartwell, GA and Kristen Odister, age 30, of Bowersville, GA were arrested for the August 8, 2016 murder of Samuel Verner Harbin, age 82, of Lavonia, Georgia.  Craft and Odister were each charged with one count of malice murder following consultation with District Attorney Parks White.

Both Craft and Odister were arrested without incident earlier today in the Bowersville area by law enforcement authorities from the Hart County Sheriff's Office, Lavonia Police Department, Georgia State Patrol, and the Georgia Bureau of Investigation.

The arrests follow a nearly round-the-clock investigation by these agencies in collaboration with the Franklin County Sheriff's Office and the Hartwell Police Department.  The investigation continues with additional leads being developed and addressed.

Preliminary autopsy results completed by the GBI Medical Examiner’s Office indicate that the cause and manner of death was homicide by blunt force injury.

As the investigation continues to progress, additional criminal charges will be forthcoming. Anyone with information concerning Craft or Odister and their connection to this crime are urged to contact the Hart County Sheriff’s Office at 706-376-3114, the Lavonia Police Department at 706-356-4848, or the GBI at 1-800-597-8477.

Contact Information: 
Mike Ayers - Special Agent in Charge - 706/552-2309