Tue, Jul 27, 2021 7:23 PM
By The Associated Press, AP
CUMMING, Ga. (AP) — Georgia's top law enforcement agency has completed its investigation into the death of a 40-year-old Black woman found dead after attending an adult sleepover party in 2018, saying Tuesday that its findings do not support the pursuit of any criminal charges.
The Georgia Bureau of Investigation conducted its probe into the death of Tamla Horsford, who was found dead in the backyard of a Forsyth County home on Nov. 4, 2018, the morning after the slumber party. Horsford's family has long suspected foul play.
Multiple news outlets reported that the bureau, or GBI, confirmed Tuesday its investigation was complete and that a district attorney's review “determined the facts and investigative findings do not support pursuit and prosecution of criminal charges.”
Forsyth County sheriff’s investigators concluded in 2019 that Horsford, the mother of five, died after accidentally falling from a second-story deck at the home, located about 40 miles (65 kilometers) northeast of Atlanta. The county sheriff's office announced at the time that it was closing the case because investigators said there was no evidence of foul play.
Still, family and friends at the time had said they believed foul play was involved, and the GBI agreed to reopen the case at the request of Sheriff Ron Freeman amid the public outcry.
Investigators have cited the findings of a medical examiner who ruled that the woman's injuries were consistent with a fall from the home’s deck. They also said an autopsy uncovered a blood alcohol level content of .23, which is nearly three times the legal driving limit in Georgia. Traces of Xanax and marijuana were also found in her system, according to authorities.
Authorities have said there were no witnesses to the fall and that Horsford had been on the deck alone. Detectives were able to corroborate incident details using logs from the home’s security system, according to officials.