Local News

Authorities search for clues to Locklear's disappearance

Posted April 4
Updated April 6

— As the family of Danielle Locklear awaits word about whether it was her body found Wednesday in the South River, Cumberland County sheriff's deputies talked to two people who might provide clues to what happened to the missing Hope Mills teen.

Sources close to the investigation said deputies searched two homes Friday – one off N.C. Highway 210 and another on Cade Hill Road – for clues to her disappearance.

Those sources said deputies talked to people of interest at both places and found evidence in the first home that relates to the case. The sources, however, would not specify what that evidence is.

Cumberland County Sheriff Earl "Moose" Butler said Friday that it was one of his deputies who discovered the body near Autryville around 6 p.m. Wednesday.

"He noticed something that was unusual and – being a deputy, as he is, and investigator – he stopped and he wasn't sure," Butler said. "He said he called one of our deputies to bring binoculars so they could check it out, and when the deputy got there, they were able to determine it was a body."

The body has been sent to the North Carolina Office of the Chief Medical Examiner for a positive identification, and Hope Mills police have spoken to Locklear's family. It could be two to three days before police receive a positive identification, Hope Mills Police Chief Joel Acciardo said Thursday.

"The crime started in Hope Mills, and we don't know where the death took place, but we're assuming in that area," Butler said Friday. "That's the reason Hope Mills got the responsibility. We're going to be there to support them."

Sources close to the investigation say they are confident that the body is 15-year-old Locklear's, and they also told WRAL News that it appears that she died of asphyxiation.

Locklear left her grandparents' home on Trencholm Lane in the Fox Meadow/Brook Ridge subdivisions on March 11 to visit a friend. She never arrived, and her grandfather contacted police the following day.

Her family has asked for privacy and prayers.

19 Comments

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  • dejr8875 Apr 8, 12:28 p.m.

    I thought 2 teens found the body, or is the deputy just taking credit for it?

    — Posted by Obamacare returns again

    I agree with you, to me, this story sounds like a botched confession by the sheriff's office. I'm glad the body was found, and my heart goes out to the family, but they need to get their story straight. I mean, what was the sheriff doing, taking a leisurely walk and finds a body? Doesn't add up.

  • btneast Apr 7, 8:26 a.m.

    [bThe wise first assumption should always be abduction, not runaway, because it puts boots on the ground faster affording a better opportunity to find the child safe and alive][/b]

    I understand your thoughts, but the overwhelming majority of "missing children" reports for teens that the authorities get turn out to be runaways. If they put out massive manhunts every time a parent reported their teen missing, not only would no other law enforcement activity get done, the back up to conduct searches for other missing teens be huge.

  • cepwjp Apr 4, 5:36 p.m.

    There are so many typos in this story it makes it hard to read, outside of the circumstances at hand. Prayers for the family and hopefully justice is served.

  • "Screen Name-8/20" Apr 4, 4:40 p.m.

    We do have a Nextel Child Alert in place for the Town of Hope Mills. The question is...If... View More

    — Posted by huselarson

    Possibly because the assumed she had run away. That is usually the first thought when a teenager... View More

    — Posted by carolinarox

    -

    And THAT is another thing that needs to stop.

    The wise first assumption should always be abduction, not runaway, because it puts boots on the ground faster affording a better opportunity to find the child safe and alive, regardless the exact circumstances.

  • "Screen Name-8/20" Apr 4, 4:38 p.m.

    "It could be two to three days before police receive a positive identification, Hope Mills Police Chief Joel Acciardo said Thursday."

    Absurd that it takes that long.

  • carolinarox Apr 4, 4:07 p.m.

    We do have a Nextel Child Alert in place for the Town of Hope Mills. The question is...If... View More

    — Posted by huselarson

    Possibly because the assumed she had run away. That is usually the first thought when a teenager goes missing.

  • brandy213122 Apr 4, 3:40 p.m.

    I re-read the article where it once said the body was wrapped in plastic and that parts gone as well. Again....misinformation.

  • 4n0n Apr 4, 3:16 p.m.

    Wait, I thought two people fishing discovered the body? Now they are saying it was a deputy? Hmm

  • brandy213122 Apr 4, 2:54 p.m.

    I have a 15 year old son and this is so scary to hear things like this, especially when you are a parent of a child of the same age.

    There are too many holes in the time line and too much misinformation.

  • roncooksr Apr 4, 2:37 p.m.

    getting close to election time, was said 2 kids fishing found the body and called it in

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