Local News

Four Face Charges In Connection With Missing Sanford Woman

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Gilbert Stone and Phillip Bunnell
SANFORD, N.C. — Sanford authorities have made three arrests and are looking for another suspect in connection with the disappearance of Linda Darlene Holder Watts, who has been missing since 2004.

Investigators have charged 35-year-old Gilbert Delano Stone Jr. and 31-year-old Phillip Jason Bunnell with aiding and abetting first-degree murder, aiding and abetting first-degree kidnapping, and aiding and abetting first-degree rape. Frederick Spinks and Eric Quick face charges of murder, rape and kidnapping in connection with the case.

Stone, Bunnell and Spinks are being held at the Lee County Jail. Quick has not yet been arrested on the charges pending against him.

Watts was last seen on May 14, 2004, walking home from a shift at the newspaper.

"It hurts," said Watts' mother, Shirley Holder. "It hurts every night and day. There isn't a minute of the day where I don't think about her. It's hard."

At the time of her disappearance, police found some of Watts' belongings near McIver and Jenkins streets, including a newspaper, clothing and food.

Authorities say the investigation is ongoing.

"I just hope they caught the right ones," said Holder. "I've been waiting for two years for this."

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