Local News

Missing Holly Springs woman found; ex-boyfriend arrested

Posted June 9, 2008 10:03 a.m. EDT
Updated June 9, 2008 2:26 p.m. EDT

— Shelly Pannell, the Holly Springs woman whose ex-boyfriend allegedly abducted her from her home Sunday, was found at about 2 a.m. Monday at a Sleep Inn in Henderson.

She was taken to a hospital for treatment, authorities said.

Police arrested her ex-boyfriend, Earnest Lee Bryant, 25, at the motel. He was charged with first-degree kidnapping, assault and breaking into Pannell's home on New Hill Road.

He was being held on $153,000 bond. Police listed Holly Springs and Henderson addresses for Bryant.

Bryant has an arrest record and has been known to carry a firearm, police said. He was in the Wake County Jail on Monday. A first court appearance was scheduled that same day.

Police issued a statewide alert for Pannell on Sunday after discovering there were signs of a break-in at her house.

After interviewing Pannell’s family, police began issuing alerts to law enforcement agencies to be on the lookout for the car Bryant was believed to be driving, a turquoise 2005 Toyota Highlander.

In response, Apex police said a motorist had reported seeing the vehicle about 11 a.m. Sunday on U.S. 1 headed north. A man inside the vehicle appeared to be acting aggressively toward a female, the witness told Apex police.