2 charged with murder, more suspects ID’d in case of missing N.C. man found dead in Horry County

Published: Jan. 20, 2023 at 4:14 PM EST|Updated: Jan. 20, 2023 at 4:32 PM EST
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HORRY COUNTY, S.C. (WMBF) – New details have been released in the case of a North Carolina man who was found dead in Horry County after being reported missing earlier this month.

The Horry County Police Department said Friday that eight suspects in total have been identified in connection to the death of Corey Soles, of Chadbourn, North Carolina.

Samantha Watts, who was taken into custody earlier this week, now faces a murder charge in addition to charges of obstructing justice and accessory after the fact to a felony.

Samantha Watts
Samantha Watts(J. Reuben Long Detention Center)

Jonathan Watts, 18, was also arrested and is charged with second-degree assault and battery by mob.

Amber Watts was newly identified by police Friday as being connected to the case. Records show was taken into custody on Wednesday and is charged with accessory to murder.

Jonathan Watts, Amber Watts
Jonathan Watts, Amber Watts(JRLDC)

Three juveniles have also been arrested, including one who is now charged with murder. Their identities have not been released due to their age.

Newly-released warrants state Samantha Watts and a co-defendant caused the Soles’ death sometime between Jan. 8-9. She also allegedly “aided and abetted her co-defendant while the victim was struck with a blunt object multiple times causing his death.”

Jonathan Watts, meanwhile, allegedly assaulted Soles with others and caused great bodily injury including a broken leg and nose as well as knocking him unconscious.

Arrest warrants for Amber Watts state she helped in “removing and disposing of the victim” and worked with other suspects to conceal evidence.

The warrants also cite surveillance video along with physical and forensic evidence in the case.

The HCPD additionally said Friday that two adults, 25-year-old Ryan Porter and 20-year-old Joshua Brown, remain wanted in connection to the case.

Ryan Porter, Joshua Brown
Ryan Porter, Joshua Brown(HCPD)

Porter is wanted on charges of assault and battery by mob, while Brown is wanted for accessory after the fact.

Horry County Chief Deputy Coroner Tamara Willard said Soles’s body was found Jan. 16 in the area of Green Sea Road after he was reported missing the week prior.

WMBF News spoke with members of Soles’s family on Wednesday as well as a man who assisted in finding his body.

Corey Adam Soles
Corey Adam Soles(Tonya Godwin)

“The mama told me that her son had been missing and nobody was saying anything and nobody was doing any talking and they had no idea where he was at,” said Christopher Rhodes, who works with Precision Search and Rescue. “He had been missing for well over a week. Nobody had seen him, nobody had heard from him, no communication. And that was strange because his family says he’s a very loving intelligent guy.”

Rhodes went to the area where the victim was last seen the same day Horry County police reported Soles was found beaten to death.

Online records show Samantha Watts was granted an $85,000 bond during a hearing on Wednesday and remains at the J. Reuben Long Detention Center as of Friday afternoon.

Jonathan Watts was issued a $25,000 bond Thursday morning and remains behind bars as of Friday. Amber Watts was granted a $16,615 bond, but also remains in jail as of Friday.

The HCPD said the investigation is active and ongoing.

Stay with WMBF News for updates.