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NC Wanted: Investigators search for clues in 42-year-old unsolved murder case

Posted April 11, 2015

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— Bonnie Neighbors, 33, disappeared in December 1972 while on her way to pick up her son from school. After an extensive search, the mother of two from Benson was found slain in an abandoned migrant worker housing unit. Her infant son was found huddled next to her body unharmed.

Her killer has remained at large for 42 years, making the case Johnston County's oldest unsolved murder.

“In 1972, I was only 14 years of age, but I remember that case,” Johnston County Sheriff Steve Bizzell said.

Bizzell re-opened Neighbors file in 2007 because of what he described as a gut feeling.

“We've got a list of individuals, that are individuals of interest in this case, that are still living and we're gonna be knocking on their doors possibly,” Bizzell said.

A cold-case squad was set up to look into Neighbors' slaying. Since then, deputies have received several tips.

DNA evidence discovered on Neighbors' clothing was sent to the SBI lab for analysis. The evidence later ruled out a man that had allegedly never cooperated with investigators and who was thought of as a person of interest by Neighbors' family.

Neighbors' husband said with the new focus on the case he hopes deputies will get the clue they need to make an arrest.

“It was nice to know, now I can see the light at the end of the tunnel, thank goodness,” said Ken Neighbors. "I'm patient, have to be. But it (an arrest) will be here I think."

Anyone with information about the unsolved murder is asked to call 1-866-43-2683.


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