Local News

Autopsy details violence in killing of North Hills woman

Posted June 21, 2013
Updated June 22, 2013

— An autopsy released Friday revealed a 30-year-old mother who was found dead in her North Hills apartment in May died from repeated, savage blows to her head and neck.

Melissa Huggins-Jones suffered 11 wounds to her head and neck, including a “chop wound” to her scalp and deep injury to her nose and cheek. The blows were so forceful that they penetrated her skull and dislodged teeth.

The report also noted eight more wounds to the rest of her body and numerous bruises.

Her injuries were likely caused “by an instrument capable of inflicting both sharp and blunt force injuries,” the medical examiner wrote in the report.

Huggins-Jones was killed May 14 in a homicide that shocked the North Hills community she had recently moved to from Tennessee. Her body was discovered by a construction worker about 7:30 a.m. after her 8-year-old daughter approached a crew working at the apartments and asked for help.

Ronald Lee Anthony, 23, of 1800 S. Bloodworth St., Raleigh, Travion Devonte Smith, 20, of Raleigh, and Sarah Rene Redden, 18, of 3209 Scotch Pine Trail, Wake Forest, were arrested May 22 on charges of first-degree murder. They were indicted by a grand jury earlier this month.

Investigators have said they believe the suspects tried to burglarize her apartment.


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  • 27501 Jun 24, 2013

    if these three are not put to death and ever in the next 100 years hurt anyone else the people of NC should hold the judge and the courts system accountable

  • Pseudonym Jun 21, 2013

    Ms. Huggins-Jones never got the benefit of consultation with an attorney, a trial in front of a fair and impartial jury referreed by a judge, numerous appeals, 3 hots and a cot, visitation, etc before her demise.

    None of these animals should get those things either.

  • lolly Jun 21, 2013

    That poor little girl found her mom in that state - beat to death by an axe or a tire iron.

    The defendants lawyer's will use every trick in the book to get those worthless creeps set free. And no one will remember the poor little girl, running outside, trying to flag down a construction worker, to get help for her mom.

  • mrman2a Jun 21, 2013

    They will get a slap on the wrist from our great judicial system.They were not given every thing they wanted as children now the are mentally scarred.(BOO HOO !)

  • babygurl324 Jun 21, 2013

    Just provide me with the same object And let me save the court some time And money.These scumballs deserve the same treatment.A innocent woman trying to make a living for.her And her children

  • rachel Jun 21, 2013

    burglary-I get-sort of-murder like this-I don't get- no one could be that high or that needy or that bored or that led astray that they could just do this to someone else. There are some brain cells missing in those responsible, and jail is way too good for them. Rabid dogs need to be put down, rabid people as well.

  • Slappy171 Jun 21, 2013

    Too bad these three cant suffer the same fate.