The death of Debbie Collier, a 59-year-old Athens woman who was found dead on Sept. 11, was ruled a suicide on Friday by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, according to an article from The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Collier was reported missing in Athens on Sept. 10 and found the next day in Habersham County, partially burned and topless in an embankment, according to the AJC article.
The burn marks found on Collier’s body provided cause for the police department to treat her case as a murder investigation.
“We do not believe that this is a random act of violence,” said Col. Murray Kogod from the Habersham County Sheriff’s Office at a September press conference. “We do not believe that this is the act of a serial killer. We believe that this act was deliberate and personal.”
The GBI Medical Examiner’s Office said Collier’s cause of death was inhalation of superheated gases, thermal injuries and hydrocodone intoxication, leading them to rule it a suicide, according to the AJC.
Collier was last seen alive in video footage from a Clayton County Family Dollar, showing her visiting the store alone and not showing any signs of distress. She purchased a rain poncho, refillable torch lighter, a 2-pack roll of paper towels, a tarp and a reusable tote bag.