GSP releases names of victims in fatal Long Co. accident

Published: Oct. 18, 2014 at 8:26 PM EDT|Updated: Nov. 18, 2014 at 2:51 AM EST
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LONG CO., GA (WTOC) - The Georgia State Patrol is investigating a fatal accident which occurred Saturday afternoon on Highway 301 near George Swindell Road.

According to Trooper Eric Wilkes, the accident happened shortly after 12 p.m. Gina Marie Pepin, 59, of Panama City Beach, FL, and Gerard Pepin were traveling northbound in a 2007 Ford Mustang and ran off the highway into a wooded area. Both were ejected from the vehicle.

Gina Pepin was pronounced dead at the scene. Gerard Pepin was flown by helicopter to Memorial University Medical Center in Savannah, and there are now charges pending against him.

The man and woman were staying at a Richmond Hill motel. A housekeeper found something of a suspicious nature in the room they were staying in and called police.

Wilkes said the accident appears to have been intentional due to items found in the hotel room the couple was staying at and statements made.

Richmond Hill Police Department Maj. Mike Albritton said the suspicious items found in a Richmond Hill hotel occupied by Gerard and Gina Pepin was a suicide note and blood splatters throughout room from injures to their necks which were self inflicted.

Albritton said a house keeper who works at the Royal Inn found the note and the blood and called police. When detectives Doug Sahlberg and Keith Welch arrived they were unable to find the persons from which the blood had come from.

Sahlberg and Welch secured the name of the occupant of the room and began reviewing video tapes from the hotels parking lot. According to Albritton The Pepin's were seen leaving the hotel around 10:30 a m and entering their 2007 Ford Mustang. Albritton said on the tape Gerard Pepin could be seen helping Gina Marie Pepin into the car.

Wilkes confirmed Gerard Pepin, 62, is out on bond stemming from a sexual assault case in Volusia County, FL, after being charged with blackmailing a patient for sex.

Pepin was a former Salvation Army psychotherapist.

According to a media report from television station WLBZ, out of Bangor Maine where Gerard Pepin lived, his former wife Deborah Jones is writing a book on the former psychotherapist who is accused of assaulting a 24 year patient.

Pepin according to a Bay County Sheriffs Office press release was arrested on June 12, 2014 and charged with 2 counts of sexual battery and sexual misconduct.

Major Albritton with Richmond Hill Police said their portion of the case is complete and now Georgia State Patrol will take over the investigation.

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