Richmond Hill man charged with shooting, killing wife - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Richmond Hill man charged with shooting, killing wife

Jeremiah Joel Watkins (Source: Bryan County Sheriff's Office) Jeremiah Joel Watkins (Source: Bryan County Sheriff's Office)
Source: Desirae Bell-McRae Source: Desirae Bell-McRae
Source: Desirae Bell-McRae Source: Desirae Bell-McRae
Source: Desirae Bell-McRae Source: Desirae Bell-McRae
RICHMOND HILL, GA (WTOC) -

A 29-year-old woman is dead and her husband is charged with her murder. 

"My sister was murdered," Desirae Bell-McRae said. "That's not something I wish for anybody to witness or anybody to go through."

Richmond Hill Police officers found 29-year-old Breona Watkins shot around 3:30 a.m.Sunday at Plantation Apartments in Richmond Hill, according to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation.

"I've been here about two years, and it's usually a really great place," Ruby Duerr , who lives at Plantation Apartments, said. "No problems. This weekend, a guy shot his wife here. It was awful because things don't happen like that here."

Jeremiah Watkins, Breona's 32-year-old husband, turned himself into Hinesville Police on Sunday, and the Georgia Bureau of Investigation arrested and charged him with murder. 

"It's just so sad, and it's just so shocking," said Paula Baker, who lives at Plantation Apartments. "I feel really bad for the family and those that are going to be affected by this."

Watkins' has a daughter, Mia, who is less than a year old.

"My family needs your prayers because she left her beautiful daughter behind," Bell-McRae said.

A former coworker also said Breona recently started working at Winn Army Community Hospital and was excited about her new job.

Duerr said having a killing happen so close to home is disconcerting.

"It's scary," Duerr said. "I'm an old person and I can't fight back, so I don't like it. I can't even imagine being mad enough to kill your wife. Ever. Can't even imagine."

Baker said she isn't concerned about her own safety, but said the shooting is a stark reminder domestic violence can be deadly.

"Domestic violence is so frightening, and so many men end up killing their wives," she said. "You know, it just doesn't make any sense. I will send some prayers out to the family."

Bell-McRae issued this plea to people who find themselves in abusive relationships.

"Any woman, any man out there if you're going through domestic violence or if somebody's putting their hands on you, if somebody's doing something, leave them alone," she said. "Leave them alone. It's not worth it."

The Georgia Bureau of Investigation is handling the case. The agency hasn't released a motive for the shooting and says the investigation is ongoing. Anyone with information is asked to call the GBI Statesboro office at (912) 871-1121.

Bell-McRae started a GoFundMe to help pay for Watkins' funeral expenses.

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