Local News

Johnston Murder Suspect In Custody Following Standoff

Posted January 21, 2003

— Authorities in Johnston County said a standoff that lasted for several hours Tuesday is over and the suspect is in custody.

Witnesses say the standoff finally came to a close in the driveway when Tony Ray Holder, 19, got into a car and tried to back away. For the first time ever, the Johnston County Sheriff's Office used a beanbag fired from a shotgun to stun Holder.

Officials believe Holder shot and killed

Ricky Cornelius Sanders Jr.,

24, of Selma just before 1 a.m. at the Riverview Apartments on River Road in Selma. Authorities said Holder was dating Sanders' sister.

The sheriff's office said Holder went to his mother's house in the 9000 block of Buffaloe Road, where he remained barricaded for 12 hours. He was finally captured around 2 p.m.

Neighbor Nikki Lane watched the drama unfold from her home across the street. Lane said deputies talked to Holder with a megaphone.

"I just dropped to my knees and said, 'Lord, please don't let them have to shoot that boy.' I'm a mother, too," she said.

"I'm glad he didn't hurt any of the police and everything," said Elizabeth Ricks, Holder's grandmother.

Investigators still do not have a motive for the murder. People who live in the rural neighborhood said deputies have been called to the residence before.

Officials said both men have criminal histories in Johnston County.


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