Murder and assault victims identified

Published 3:47 pm Tuesday, February 21, 2023

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AULANDER – An 80-year-old woman and her 62-year-old caregiver are the victims in an assault that turned deadly here Monday night.

Bertie County Sheriff Tyrone Ruffin identified the deceased victim as Lan Thi Rawles, age 80. Her caregiver, Rochelle Harrell, was airlifted to ECU Health Medical Center in Greenville where she is listed in critical condition.

Ruffin added that a secondary crime scene has been established in the 800 block of South Commerce Street in Aulander. It was there that a vehicle belonging to one of the victims was found.

The Sheriff said first responders were dispatched at 11:51 pm on Monday to a home at 108 North Commerce Street. Ruffin said that call was in reference to a female that had been cut.

“Upon the arrival of the first responders, they found one victim in critical condition from her injuries and a second victim deceased,” Ruffin said in a press release sent Tuesday morning. “There is no suspect in custody.”

The Sheriff added that there is no motive for the attacks on the two women. He said there were no signs of forced entry into the home, which is located near the usually busy intersection of Commerce Street and Main Street.

The North Carolina State Bureau of Investigations has been called in to assist the Bertie Sheriff’s Office.

“Our investigators and the North Carolina SBI have been working through the night following up on leads,” Ruffin said on Tuesday.

The Sheriff said that if anyone has information about this case, they are encouraged to contact the Bertie County Sheriff’s Office 252-794-5330.

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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