North Carolina officials have released the 911 call made by a witness who found the bodies of two North Carolina teenagers reported missing more than a week ago.
Lyric Woods, 14, and Devin Clark, 18, were reported missing after the night of Friday, Sept. 16 when their parents discovered they had not returned home. On Sunday afternoon, a man called 911 to report that he'd discovered two bodies in a rural area where there was a power line easement.
The two bodies were identified as Woods and Clark. They had both been shot to death.
The Orange County Sheriff's Office announced on Sept. 20 that they had identified a 17-year-old suspect in the case and filed a juvenile petition for two counts of first-degree murder — akin to a warrant for his arrest. Because the suspect is under the age of 18, North Carolina law requires that he first be charged in juvenile court and his identity protected, but the sheriff's office noted, in any case in which a 16- or 17-year old is indicted on (like murder) or for which a judge finds probable cause for a major felony (like murder), "a district court judge shall transfer the case to superior court."
Photo: Orange County Sheriff's Office; Facebook
Until then, the office explained this week to Raleigh-Durham CBS affiliate WNCN, they cannot legally name the suspect, even to assist in his capture, without endangering the case against him.
“We cannot afford a misstep this close to the goal line,” Orange County Sheriff Charles Blackwood told the station, noting that they are prohibited by law by releasing any materials or files about the suspect until or unless the case is transferred out of the juvenile court system.
The police did, however, release redacted audio of the 911 call made by one of two men who reportedly found Woods' and Clark's bodies, which was published by Fox News.
On it, the caller explains that he and a friend were riding four wheelers along the power company line access road.
"I would like to speak to the officer in person, but what we have found is we’ve actually discovered two dead bodies," he tells the operator. "It's at the end of Buckhorn and Yarborough Road ... there's a power, an access to where the power company is kind of road. They're just laying out on the side of the road."
Woods' grandfather, Stan Dean, was one of the first responders at the scene, according to local news station WRAL. He has since built a makeshift memorial near the site, with a lighted cross because his granddaughter was afraid of the dark, the Charlotte News & Observer reported.