LUMBERTON, NC (WBTW) – After the body of a third woman was discovered in the same Lumberton neighborhood within a seven-week span, community members are growing more afraid to leave their own homes.
Lumberton police say the body of a woman was discovered Saturday morning behind a home on East 8th Street. The deceased woman, whose name has not been released, is the third body to be discovered within a half mile radius after two other women were found deceased near a home on East 5th Street on April 18.
“It scares me,” admits Dale Prevatt, who lives in the community where the three bodies were discovered. Prevatt lives across the street from the home where the third female was found and says it feels like nothing is being done to protect the neighborhood.
“You have three [bodies] in less than three months,” expresses Prevatt. “Within two blocks apart. It seems like nothing is happening. I mean, who knows, next it might be my next door neighbor.”
Lumberton Police Chief Michael McNeill says detectives have started investigating and talking with people in the area.
“We’ve never had anything like this happen to us before,” says Chief McNeill. “Finding two bodies at one time and now a third body that is a female, not in Lumberton, not in this county have we found anything like what we have right now.”
Investigators are looking at cold cases with similarities dating back to 2003, but say the most recent deaths still have limited clues as the causes of death have not even been determined.
“We want to find out the cause of death. When the last time the females have been seen and who they were with,” says Chief McNeill.
The Lumberton Police Department is working with federal, state and county agencies to solve the cases.
“The first thing I notice is this is somebody’s daughter, someone’s child. That’s how I look at it,” reveals Chief McNeill.
Investigators will go door-to-door Tuesday to speak with residents who live in the area to see if they’ve noticed anything out of the ordinary or may be able to help with the investigations in any way.
News13 spoke with Lumberton City Councilman John Cantey who is over the area. He did say the city is working on destroying abandoned homes throughout the city.