Local News

Search continues for Roanoke Rapids slaying suspect

Posted March 31, 2010 5:31 p.m. EDT
Updated April 1, 2010 11:58 a.m. EDT

— Halifax County sheriff's deputies submitted a murder suspect Wednesday for consideration on "America's Most Wanted." Maj. Bruce Temple said authorities believe the man who killed Michael Davis, of Roanoke Rapids, has left the area.

Richard Charles Demello, 44, is wanted on charges of assault with a deadly weapon, first-degree kidnapping and larceny of a motor vehicle.

Investigators believe that Demello killed Davis, 48, at his Mobley Street home sometime before 7 a.m. March 28. Davis died from repeated blunt force trauma to his upper torso with a sharpened object, deputies said.

Deputies said Demello also threatened a woman with a knife and tied her up to a bed. She broke free, escaped from the house and reported the crime.

Investigators have said that the men knew each other but haven't commented on a motive for the slaying. Demello was released from prison in January and has 11 convictions for felony breaking-and-entering and larceny in Harnett County, according to state Department of Correction records.

Demello has ties to Harnett County, Rhode Island and Missouri. He might be driving a blue 1998 Plymouth Neon with a spoiler, possibly with North Carolina license plate YWZ-2442.

Anyone with information about Demello's whereabouts is asked to call the sheriff's office at 252-583-8201 or Halifax County Crime Stoppers at 252-583-4444.