Accused Tara Grinstead killer makes first appearance

VIDEO: Tara Grinstead accused killer makes first appearance

OCILLA, Ga. – Ryan Alexander Duke, the man accused of killing Tara Grinstead, made his first appearance in court Thursday afternoon.

After 12 years, authorities announced that they arrested Duke in connection to beauty queen and teacher's disappearance and murder. According to investigators, Duke attended Irwin County High School, where Grinstead taught. He had graduated about three years prior to her disappearance. 

On Thursday, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation held a news conference to announce that Duke, 33, was arrested after someone came forward with new information this week.

BREAK IN THE CASE | Arrest made in murder of Georgia beauty queen Tara Grinstead

PHOTOS | Ryan Duke makes first appearance


The suspect, Duke, "never came up on our radar" during the investigation into Grinstead's disappearance, investigators said at the news conference.

Authorities provided little other information into the details of Grinstead's disappearance or death. 

Duke is charged with murder, according to investigators.

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