Arrest made in cold case murder of UGA law student Tara Louise Baker

Posted at 9:15 AM, May 10, 2024

ATHENS, Ga. (Court TV) — An arrest has been made in the cold case murder of a University of Georgia law student.

Tara Louise Baker, 23, was a first-year law school student when she was killed in 2001, states a press release from the Georgia Bureau of Investigation. Firefighters responded to a fire at her apartment on Jan. 19, and ultimately determined the blaze was intentionally set.

portrait of tara baker

FILE – Tara Louise Baker (GBI)

48-year-old Edrick Lamont Faust is charged with murder, two counts of felony murder, one count of aggravated assault, concealing the death of another, arson, possession of a knife during the commission of a felony, tampering with evidence, and one count of aggravated sodomy in connection with Baker’s death.

Last year, the GBI Cold Unit and Athens-Clarke County Police Department partnered “to conduct an in-depth review and analysis of the ongoing investigation into Baker’s death,” leading to Faust’s arrest.

Baker was last seen the evening of Jan. 18 at a UGA library, reports WAGA-TV. Just before 10pm that night, she told a friend she planned to leave the library soon and head home.

GBI Director Chris Hosey said:

“Tara’s life was stolen from her in a horrific act of violence. While this arrest does not bring her back to us, I pray that it helps bring closure to the Baker family as they continue their healing journey. I am proud of the work of the GBI Cold Case Unit and the GBI agents and scientists that devoted their efforts over the last 23 years to find justice for Tara. I also want to express my gratitude to Athens Clarke-County investigators and members of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Georgia State Patrol who have partnered with us in this case. While this arrest is the first step in finding justice for Tara, there is still more work to be done. The GBI and our partners will never stop fighting for justice for victims and their families.”

Anyone with information about this investigation is encouraged to submit a tip. Anonymous tips can be submitted by calling 1-800-597-TIPS (8477), online at, or by downloading the See Something, Send Something mobile app.