An 18-year-old Marine has been charged with murder after police found the body of his missing grandmother.
Police discovered the body of his grandmother Sallie Copeland Evans, 74, near a highway in Roanoke Rapids the night before. Her family had filed a missing persons report after they didn't hear from Evans for several days.
Caesar had been absent without leave since April 2 and was wanted for desertion. Before Evans' death, she had tried convincing him to return to his post, the family said.
Willie Patterson, Evans’ neighbor of around 20 years, told ABC11 that Evans had even asked him to join her and Caesar on a drive to Camp Lejeune, a nearby military base, where she reportedly planned to talk to Caesar about resuming his military career. Warning bells went off for Patterson after Evans did not show up at the time they were scheduled to leave.
“It's weird because if she was going to leave like that, she'd call me,” Patterson said. “She'd ask me to take the three little dogs she's got, she'd let me know where the keys at and I'd keep the keys till she get back.”
Police located Caesar at a Homewood Suites on Friday after he used his grandmother’s credit card to purchase a room. After finding explosive materials in Caesar’s room, investigators evacuated the hotel. Rocky Mount police called in the State Bureau of Investigations' bomb removal team, who later concluded that no bombs were present.
Caesar, who was also in possession of his grandmother’s stolen car at the time of his arrest, is being held without bond. He is scheduled to appear in court May 16.
[Photo: Halifax County Sheriff's Office]