Wilson murder has local ties

Published 10:35 am Monday, April 15, 2013

JACKSON – A man reported missing in Northampton County has been found dead in Wilson.

Kirk Alan Lilly, 41, of Leland was last seen in Northampton County where he stayed at a residence on Old Emporia Road in Gaston. He was found dead in the trunk of a vehicle on April 5.

According to Northampton County Sheriff’s Detective Captain Brenda Burnette, the NCSO filed a missing person report on April after receiving a call from law enforcement in Leland, located in Brunswick County.

Burnette said the victim’s girlfriend went to authorities there to report him missing, but the case was referred to the NCSO because Lilly was last seen in Northampton.

“His (Lilly’s) information was entered into NCIC as a missing person and his vehicle information (2010 Honda Accord) was also entered into the database,” Burnette said. “A BOLO (be on the lookout) was also issued.”

On April 5, the NCSO received a call from the officers Wilson Police Department who reported they had found Lilly’s vehicle abandoned at the intersection of Raleigh Road Parkway and Old Merck Road.

Burnette said the Honda had originally been found on March 28 at the same intersection where it was tagged by law enforcement as an abandoned vehicle. At that time no missing person report had been issued and the officers found nothing out of place with the vehicle.

On April 5, a passerby reported to law enforcement what they thought was someone breaking into the vehicle.

“It turned out it was (DOT) maintenance men working, but law enforcement ran the tags again and got a hit on the report filed,” Burnette said.

Burnette asked the officers to secure the vehicle until she arrived to investigate.

After obtaining a search warrant, Burnette proceeded to investigate the vehicle and found Lilly’s body in the trunk.

Burnette said the case is now being investigated as a homicide by the Wilson Police Department.

Wilson Police Sgt. John Slaughter confirmed the department is working the case as homicide, but details are not being released on how Lilly died because it is an active investigation.

He added the State Bureau of Investigation is assisting with the case along with the NCSO.

Slaughter said he believes Lilly had some ties to Pennsylvania.

“As the case progresses hopefully some leads will come up,” he said.

Those with information pertaining to the case are urged to call the Wilson Police Department at (252) 399-2323 or Crime Stoppers at (252) 243-2255.