Local News

Amber Alert issued for two missing children

Posted January 1, 2009 8:16 p.m. EST
Updated January 1, 2009 11:46 p.m. EST

— Authorities are looking for a man they say killed his ex-wife and two others before taking off with his two young children early Thursday.

Richard Doughlas Heatwole, 45, is described as a white male, about 5-foot-6 and 165 pounds. He has brown hair and hazel eyes.

Authorities consider Heatwole armed and dangerous. He is on probation for drug possession in Pinellas County, Fla., records show.

A statewide Amber Alert was issued Thursday for Heatwole's two children. 

Hayes Heatwole, 6, is described at a white male, about 3-foot-8 and 45 pounds. He has long, blond shaggy hair and blue eyes.

Haley Heatwole, 10, is described as a white female, about 4-foot-8 and 62 pounds. She has brown shoulder-length hair and hazel eyes. She has a scar on her forehead that extends to the bridge of her nose.

Officials believe he and the children may be traveling to St. Petersburg, Fla., where Heatwole has family. They may be in a white 1986 Toyota truck with an extended cab with a white camper cover. The truck may also have gold stripes and rusted fender wells. The vehicle has North Carolina license tag number YNS-8257.

Officials believe Heatwole took the children from a Candler residence where two bodies were found.

Buncombe County Sheriff's Office spokesman Lt. Ross Dillingham said deputies went to a home on Old 19-23 in Candler looking for the children’s mother Angela Heatwole after a family member reported her missing around 3 a.m. Thursday. Her car was parked outside the residence when deputies arrived around noon, but no one answered the door.

"Based on the victim's vehicle being outside, they made entrance," Dillingham said.

Dillingham said once inside, deputies found Angela Heatwole and another person dead. The second victim isn't being identified until relatives are notified, Dillingham said.

Through their investigation, officials found another person dead in a nearby home. Dillingham said that person also is not being named until relatives are notified.

Dillingham said Richard Heatwole is presently the only suspect in the slayings.

"We're not going to stop until we've found these children," Dillingham said. "We're going work on this throughout the evening, and through the weekend.”

If you have any information regarding this abduction, call the Buncombe County Sheriff`s Office immediately at 828-250-6670, or call 911 or *HP.