Hart Co. Murder Still Under Investigation

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The investigation into the suspicious death of a Hart County woman, whose body was found on Christmas Day, continues as the lone suspect arrested appeared in court this morning, Thurs., Dec. 28.

James Hodges appeared in district court in Hart County this morning for a bond hearing. Hodge’s bond has been set at $50,000 cash. His only charge remains first degree sodomy.

According to a warrant for Hodges arrest on Dec. 22, Hodges forcibly engaged in sexual intercourse with Brandy Waffird.

Now, Brandy Waffird’s family is speaking out about the events leading up to this Christmas Day tragedy.

The small Hart County community of Rowlett remains shocked after Monday’s discovery of Brandy Waffird’s body, not far from her home.

“I couldn’t believe my baby was so close to me and I didn’t know it,” Waffird’s mother, Vanessa Hardesty said. She said there is a history between her daughter and the man charged with sexually assaulting her.

Hardesty said the two were involved and Hodges was upset with her daughter for miscarrying his child.

“ ... And he blamed her for that, that she did this on purpose and he jumped on her a couple of months ago about it. She said Mama, he said I done, I killed this baby on purpose and he’s really mad about this,” Hardesty said.

Hardesty said the last time she remembers talking to her daughter was on Thurs., Dec. 21. She said when she alerted law enforcements about her missing daughter on Christmas Eve, they did not take her seriously.

“Well finally, you know we told him who we thought might have done be involved and told him where she was last at and so he said he was going to come talk to the man. He didn’t talk to the man so we called back and when we called back he came out here. He went down to the guy’s camper and talked to the guy and found her ID in his camper,” Hardesty said.

Hardesty believes Hodges is responsible for Waffird’s death and that he possibly had help.

“No, it’s not an accidental death. Somebody tortured my child,” Hardesty said.

Waffird’s family said Hodge’s trailer was located right at the edge of their property on Rowlett’s Cave Springs Road. Police are still trying to locate Waffird’s cell phone. Meanwhile, Hodges remains jailed in Hart County. He is scheduled to appear again in court on Jan.8.