Local News

Eight charged in kidnapping, killing of Chapel Hill man

Posted September 15, 2008 4:47 p.m. EDT
Updated September 16, 2008 12:34 p.m. EDT

— Orange County investigators on Monday charged five people with murder and kidnapping in the death of a missing man whose body was found Friday.

An autopsy determined that Joshua McCabe Bailey, 20, of Chapel Hill, died of a gunshot wound to the head, according to the Orange County Sheriff's Office.

Bailey had been missing since August, and his body was found near Jordan Lake on Friday night.

Five Chapel Hill men are charged with first-degree murder and kidnapping:

  • Brian Gregory Minton, 18, of 714 Smith Level Road
  • Jacob Alexander Maxwell, 18, of Twisted Oak Drive
  • Jack Johnson II, 19, of 101 Culbreth Drive
  • Brandon Hamilton Greene, 26, of 1103 Sourwood Drive
  • Ryan Ladar Davis Lee, 20, also of 1103 Sourwood Drive

Three people have charged with being accessories after the fact:

  • Gregory Lee Minton, 41, of 714 Smith Level Road in Chapel Hill
  • Mishele Slade Minton, 37, also of 714 Smith Level Road in Chapel Hill
  • Chris Manley, 23, of 306 Estes Park Apartments, Apt. J-16, in Carrboro

Lee, Manley and the elder Mintons remained at large Monday evening.

The five other suspects have been taken into custody.

Deputies had listed Brian Minton as being 28, but Orange County District Attorney Jim Woodall confirmed Tuesday that Minton was 18 and is the same person initially charged in a sexual assault case in 2007 in Chapel Hill's Southern Village. That case was dismissed, but Minton was given a suspended sentence for possessing a weapon of mass destruction (a shotgun) and put on four years' probation, according to state Department of Correction records.

Bailey's father, Steve, reported his son missing on Aug. 20, and a Silver Alert – which applies to people with a cognitive impairment – was issued. Steve Bailey had last seen his son on Weaver Street in Carrboro July 21.

Investigator Tim Horne, with the Orange County Sheriff's Office, conducted interviews with Bailey's friends and acquaintances and developed leads in several counties. The State Bureau of Investigation assigned several agents to the case.

Horne and SBI agents learned that Bailey had been shot and killed and that his body was buried in a wooded area off Twisted Oak Drive in Orange County. However, when investigators excavated that site on Sept. 11, they did not find a body.

Investigators continued interviews that day and by the evening, learned that Bailey's body had been moved to Chatham County.

SBI agents and sheriff's deputies from Orange and Chatham counties located the grave site near Jordan Lake the next day. Dr. Billy Oliver, an assistant professor of anthropology at North Carolina State University, helped to excavate it.

The human remains found there were taken to the office of the State Chief Medical Examiner in Chapel Hill. Dental records identified the body as Bailey's.

The date that Bailey was shot has not been determined, deputies said, and the investigation was continuing.