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Murder charge filed after man found dead in Hoke ditch

A Raeford man was charged Thursday with first-degree murder in connection with a body found in a Hoke County ditch two weeks ago, authorities said.

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Johnny Gray, charged in Hoke County slaying
RAEFORD, N.C. — A Raeford man was charged Thursday with first-degree murder in connection with a body found in a Hoke County ditch two weeks ago, authorities said.

Johnny Gray, 43, of 920 Johnson St., was being held without bond in the Hoke County jail.

The body of Ricky Bratcher, 38, was found in a roadside ditch on Sept. 24. Hoke County authorities haven't disclosed the location of the ditch.

Bratcher was beaten to death, authorities said.

Authorities haven't disclosed a possible motive for the slaying or what evidence led to Gray's arrest. They said the case remains under investigation.

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Matthew Burns, Web Editor

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