Suspect in Helena double homicide returned to Alabama from Florida

Published 5:45 pm Tuesday, February 1, 2022

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By MICHELLE LOVE | Staff Writer

HELENA – John Peyton Scott III, the key suspect in a double homicide that occurred in Helena two weeks ago, has officially been booked in the Shelby County Jail.

Scott was extradited from the St. John’s County Sheriff’s Office in St. Augustine, Florida following his arrest on Monday, Jan. 24.

He is being charged with two counts of capital murder charges in the deaths of Sharon Tarwater Whited and her father Chester E Tarwater Jr.

“I can sleep a little better knowing he is back in Shelby County and will face justice,” said Helena Police Chief Brad Flynn.

Scott was arrested in St. Augustine, Florida on Monday, Jan. 24 after arrest warrants were issued by the Shelby County Major Crimes Task Force on Sunday night, Jan. 23.

He was immediately taken into custody in St. Augustine. Detectives with the Helena Police Department and the task force are making travel arrangements for Scott to be brought back to Shelby County.

Scott was a person of interest by the police and the task force from the start of the investigation after they were called to the 100 block of Piney Woods Drive in Helena on Jan. 19.

Upon arrival, the police discovered that 40-year-old Sharon Tarwater Whited and 75-year-old Chester E Tarwater Jr. had both died.

It was quickly determined that foul play was involved and an investigation into the double homicide began.

The police had been searching for Scott with good leads on his location before he was caught on Jan. 24.