A former Georgia sheriff's deputy pleaded guilty this week to fatally shooting a University of Georgia graduate he believed was having an affair with his wife.
Winford "Trey" Terrell Adams, 34, entered a guilty plea Monday morning and was sentenced to life in prison in the shooting death of University of Georgia graduate Benjamin Lloyd Cloer, 26, in 2019, according to the Athens Banner-Herald reported.
Adams was initially indicted on charges of malice murder, felony murder, first-degree home invasion, two counts of aggravated assault and two counts of firearm possession. He pleaded guilty to felony murder and aggravated assault. He also was given an additional 10 years for the aggravated assault charge.
Adams Tracked His Wife to Cloer's Home
Cloer was having a cookout with his friends on Nov. 10, 2019 and Adams's wife, Charlotte Adams, had been invited and arrived early. The deputy used a cell phone app to follow her. He entered Cloer's home with his gun in hand. As Cloer tried to flee, Adams shot him in the hand and twice in the back.
After shooting Cloer, who was pursuing a Master's degree in Artificial Intelligence, Adams, off duty and in plain clothes, called 911.During the call, Adams admitted to shooting the college student.
"I just shot somebody," Adams said on the call. "My wife was cheating on me, and I couldn't take it. I didn't shoot her, I shot the guy. I couldn't stop myself."
'I Can't Go to Jail'
Adams did not know the extent of Cloer's injuries while on the call since the man ran away after being shot, the AJC reported. The 911 operator told the deputy to put his gun down and wait for police to arrive. Adams then threatened to kill himself, telling the operator he was a deputy.
"I can't go to jail," he cried. "I can't. I'm sorry ... Tell Athens-Clarke County I'm not going to hurt any of them, but I can't go to jail."
The deputy's wife also called 911, telling authorities her husband had just shot her friend. In the background of that call, her husband could be heard telling her, "I always loved you, even if you didn't love me."
Adams was taken into custody at the scene and fired from the Madison County sheriff's office, where he had been employed since August 2018, the AJC reported. He was previously employed with the Royston Police Department and Statesboro Police Department.