Third Bertie murder reported

Published 9:34 am Tuesday, April 19, 2016

WINDSOR – The death toll is rising in Bertie County on the heels of yet another homicide over the weekend.

Complete details are unavailable at this time, but the latest homicide occurred shortly past midnight Friday (12:55 a.m. Saturday) at 345 Morning Road, located off Woodard Road south of Windsor.

There, Bertie Sheriff John Holley reported that his deputies found two men inside a home, both suffering from gunshot wounds. One of those victims is now deceased while a second was airlifted to Vidant Medical Center in Greenville. The medical condition of the surviving victim is unknown.

It is known that the two victims are related, according to Sheriff Holley. It was learned that the victim who died from the gunshot wounds was spending Friday night at the home of the surviving victim.

No other details were immediately available as Holley was busy working with the North Carolina SBI all day on Monday as that agency is assisting the Bertie Sheriff with this latest crime.

The SBI is also involved with Holley in helping to solve two other recent homicides in the county.

On Thursday afternoon of last week (April 14), Bertie deputies responded to 118 David Drive in Kelford. There, 18-year- old Shaquan Jamar Taylor was found shot to death inside a residence.

Holley made no mention of a suspect in the case, or a motive. It’s also not known if the two most recent murders are related.

Meanwhile, the Bertie Sheriff’s Office and the SBI are still investigating the homicide of 26-year-old Kelvin Singleton, which happened about a week prior to Taylor’s death.

A member of a hunting club discovered what turned out to be Singleton’s nude, partially decomposed and headless body on April 7 near Midway in a wooded area just off Ashland Church Road and reported it to law enforcement. The Bertie County Sheriff’s Office and the State Bureau of Investigation then began a joint investigation into what was believed to be a homicide.

Bertie County Sheriff John Holley said he believed the body had been at the location where it was found for about a week. Holley said Singleton’s head has still not been located.

Singleton broke out of the Chowan County Jail on Easter Sunday afternoon. He was reportedly spotted about ten minutes later a few blocks away in the Edenton town limits, but was reportedly never seen again.

The investigation thus far in that case has led law enforcement to believe that Singleton was murdered at a yet underdetermined location and his body dumped at the location where it was found in Bertie County.

Singleton had faced charges not only in Chowan County, but also in Charlotte/Mecklenburg County, including robbery, kidnapping, and assault with a deadly weapon.

Singleton was arrested in Chowan County in January for the armed robbery of an Edenton tobacco store. He escaped March 27 where investigators say he constructed a homemade shank (knife) out of a toothbrush and then used it to force a jail detention officer to release him.

Those with information on any of these three homicides are encouraged to contact the Bertie County Sheriff’s Office at (252) 794-5330 or the SBI Tip Line at (336) 209-5201.

About Cal Bryant

Cal Bryant, a 40-year veteran of the newspaper industry, serves as the Editor at Roanoke-Chowan Publications, publishers of the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald, Gates County Index, and Front Porch Living magazine.

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