Reward offered in Halifax County quadruple homicide
Posted August 22
Four senior citizens were found dead in a Halifax County home Monday morning after what authorities have described as a home invasion. The two couples were playing their weekly card game at the kitchen table when officials say they were murdered.
A family member went to check on the residents of the home at 980 Fishing Creek Road in the Glenview community west of Enfield and found the bodies, Sheriff Wes Tripp said Monday.
Tripp identified the married couples as homeowners Janice and James Harris, and visitors James and Peggy Whitley. All four had been shot while sitting at the kitchen table.
"It's very much upsetting. I knew two of these people personally," Halifax County Sheriff Wes Tripp said during an afternoon news conference.
Tripp knew 76-year-old James Whitley, a farmer, and 67-year-old Peggy Jo Whitley, a former hair stylist. They were visiting their friends, 88-year-old Jim Harris, a gunsmith, and his wife, 72-year-old Janice and administrative assistant for a local builder, when they were shot and killed
"I will not tip my hand to these cowards. So we're keeping everything close at hand, and once we maje an arrest in this case, we'll be more forthcoming with our information," Tripp said.
Some items were missing from the home, but there were no apparent signs of a struggle, Tripp said. He declined to say what had been taken.
Matt Cousins says Jim Harris worked on several of his guns over the years. He heard about the killings when he was in South Carolina watching the eclipse.
When the phone rang, it was quite a shock. I had to sit there on the car a moment and grasp what had happened," he said.
"They were just good people and they didn’t deserve to die this way," Tripp said.
The State Bureau of Investigation and sheriff's offices in Edgecombe, Northampton and Warren counties are assisting with the investigation.
Investigators from multiple law enforcement agencies set up road blocks near the home to hand out fliers and ask if anyone had seen anything suspicious.
Officials announced that a $8,000 reward may be offered for information leading to the arrest of the individuals responsible for the homicide. Anyone with information is asked to call the Halifax County Sheriff's Office at 252-583-8201 or Crime Stoppers at 252-583-4444.