Ex-girlfriend, boyfriend arrested in Durham man's disappearance
Posted June 7, 2012
Durham, N.C. — The investigation into a Durham man's disappearance last month led authorities to search his ex-girlfriend's Asheboro home, where burnt vehicle parts and human remains were found, according to the Randolph County Sheriff's Office.
Authorities believe the remains belong to John Russell Morris, 31, who was last seen by friends on May 25. They were sent to the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Chapel Hill to be positively identified.
Morris spent that Friday at a Durham Bulls game and later told his roommate he was driving to Kroger. Instead, investigators believe, Morris went to visit his ex-girlfriend, Jessica Dawson Summey, at the home she shared with her current boyfriend, Shaun Michael Lundy.
Deputies say the two suspects tried to use Morris' credit card, which led them to search their home, at 516 Mount Sheppard Road, on Wednesday. They found evidence that some sort of struggle had taken place there, as well as burnt vehicle parts matching Morris' yellow Jeep and human remains.
Summey, 21, and Lundy, 24, were arrested early Thursday in Tazwell County, Va. They will be extradited to Randolph County to face murder charges.
Investigators said Summey and Morris were romantically involved. The relationship began while Morris lived in the Asheboro area, from 2004 to 2007.
Summey's grandmother, India Freedle, said her granddaughter is a prostitute with bipolar disorder and a drug addiction. She said Summey has a 2-year-old daughter and has trouble staying on her medication.
Morris sent money to Freedle periodically to help Summey pay rent because he feared if he sent the money directly, she would use it to buy drugs, Freedle said.
Shannon Ignatowski said she considered Morris, who was an only child and whose parents are deceased, to be part of her family. She said he helped Summey out of concern for her child.
"He'd bend over backwards for you, give you the shirt of his back," she said. "(Summey) has no concern for this child of hers. She has no concern for anybody."
Douglas Wright lived with Morris at a home on Kirk Road. He said his roommate was a kind and gentle soul.
"He's the nicest, most giving person you'd ever meet," Wright said. "He had a curiosity about him. It almost seemed he knew a little bit of everything."