MAPLE HILL, N.C. (WECT) - The murder of a man and a pregnant woman in the Maple Hill area Sunday is being considered a triple homicide, District Attorney Ben David said in a news conference Thursday.
“This is a brutal murder and it needs to be solved,” David said. “We need to get justice for three victims.”
Destiny Denise Greene, 22, and her boyfriend, William Lenwood Coley III, 26, were found shot to death at their home on John Pickett Road Sunday afternoon.
Greene’s unborn child was approximately seven months in gestation, David confirmed after an autopsy report came back.
“The North Carolina law is clear and has been since 2011 that the murder of an unborn child is treated the same as an adult or someone who is already outside of the womb,” David said. “The one exception is it is not a death penalty-eligible case. You can only get a maximum of life without the possibility of parole for that child.
“I’m confident in telling you that we are now treating this like three counts of first-degree murder.”
According to the sheriff’s office, Greene was found inside of the home while Coley was located outside the residence. The number of suspects involved is unknown at this time, according to Pender County Sheriff Alan Cutler.
Officials declined to discuss other details of the murders.
“What we always try to do is corroborate information or impeach people as they are providing information,” David said. "And if they are relaying details that only someone that has intimate details of the investigation could know, then that means they were at the scene. But if we release all those details then someone could try to claim a reward or get out of trouble by talking to us when in fact they weren’t there.
“Those details, of course, will come out and we want them to, but not at this time because we have an investigative need to keep them close to the chest.”
The ATF reached out to the sheriff’s office to offer help with the investigation as well as a $10,000 reward for information that leads to the identification, arrest and conviction of anyone involved in the murders.
Information can be submitted to the ATF at 1-888-ATF-TIPS or by email at ATFTips@atf.gov.
Anyone with information regarding this investigation also is asked to contact Det. Sgt. Mark Lobel at 910-259-1212.