St. Marys man drowns in motel pool, two arrested, one charged with murder

Written by: E. George

Published March 16, 2023 @ 7:40 PM ET

Camden County (March 1, 2023) – Officers from the St. Marys Police Department responded to the Sure Stay Motel on Osborne Road regarding an unconscious and not breathing victim in the swimming pool. When they arrived, one of the suspects, Shane Douglas White, was administering CPR on the 60-year-old man at the shallow end.

One of the officers took over CPR while EMS and the fire department traveled to the scene. He did not locate a pulse on his neck or wrist and did not hear him breathing.

EMS began life-saving procedures and exhausted all means before pronouncing his death at 4:41 AM.

White explained that he left the pool area with his co-worker, Brianna Nicole Quitugua, the second suspect, at 3:50 AM to return to his room. She told him to return to the swimming pool, and when he did, he found the victim floating face-down in the shallow end.

Quitugua corroborated White’s account and stated that the victim had stayed at the pool while White walked her to the room to use the restroom. She exited a few minutes after he did and walked back to the pool.

She said she saw the victim floating, and she and White pulled him from the water. White called 911 and began performing CPR.

The officers noticed an abrasion on the victim’s forehead and were informed that he had been diagnosed with an upper respiratory infection a week prior. They did not see any signs of struggle in or around the pool; however, they smelled a strong odor of alcohol on all three individuals.

An investigation was conducted, and officers arrested the suspects on March 2. Quitugua was charged with two felony counts of being party to a crime. White was charged with aggravated assault and murder. This case is currently pending in court.

Officer’s Narrative:
[Please note: The following is a direct transcription from the official initial incident report. The Georgia Gazette does not fix any spelling or grammatical errors that may exist. Any changes or redactions made by our staff are placed inside brackets. Some errors may exist. All subjects are innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. The topics discussed may be sensitive to some readers. Discretion is advised.]

On March 1, 2023, at approximately 4:07 AM, I, Officer Shaw, badge 127, was dispatched to 2710 Osborne Road., The Sure Stay Motel Saint Marys, GA 31558 (Camden County) in reference to an unconscious and not breathing victim at the swimming pool. I responded in marked unit 719 with my lights and siren activated while exercising due regard.

I arrived on the scene and met with Shane White who was performing CPR at the pool’s shallow end on [VICTIM #1]. I took over CPR while EMTs and the fire department were en route. I checked for a pulse and could not find one under his neck or right wrist. I did not hear him breathing. Corporal Stokes, badge 121, arrived on the scene after I did and took over CPR for me.

Cpl. Stokes began CPR while waiting for EMTs and fire department personnel to arrive. Once on scene, they began life-saving procedures. EMTs exhausted all life-saving means and were unsuccessful. Mr. [VICTIM #1] was pronounced dead at 4:41 AM and the Coroner was notified. After the Coroner arrived at the scene, he examined the body, confirmed the death, and transported the body.

I spoke again with Mr. White, who said that around 3:50 AM, he left the swimming pool to go back to his room with his other coworker, Brianna Quitugua. Mr. White said that once they got to the room, Ms. Quitugua told him to return to the pool and that she would be okay without him. Once he arrived back at the pool, he found Mr. [VICTIM #1] floating face down at the shallow end.

At about that time, Ms. Quitugua returned and saw what was occurring. They then pulled Mr. [VICTIM #1] out of the pool. Mr. White called 911 and began CPR until I arrived. I then spoke with Ms. Quitugua. Ms. Quitugua explained that around 3:50 AM, she needed to go to the restroom. She and Mr. White returned to their rooms and Mr. [VICTIM #1] stayed at the pool.

Ms. Quitugua said that once they got to her room, she told Mr. White to return to the pool that she would be fine. Mr. White left and went back down to the pool. Two to three minutes later, she returned to the pool as well. That is when they found Mr. [VICTIM #1] facedown in the pool’s shallow end. They pulled him out and Mr. White began CPR after he called 911.

Mr. [VICTIM #1] had an abrasion on his forehead. We were informed Mr. [VICTIM #1] had had an upper respiratory infection for about a week. There were no signs of a struggle in or around the pool area. There was alcohol involved and the odor of alcohol was powerful on all the individuals involved. The on-call investigator was called and made aware of the situation.

The following medications were found in his room #[REDACTED] of the Sure Stay Motel.

Methylprednisolone (4mg)
Lisinopril (12.5 mg)
Azithromycin (250mg)

[End of Narrative]