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Grand jury indicts murder suspect

 

JENNA-LEY HARRISON

Staff Writer

 

One day after a Lincoln County grand jury indicted a Lincolnton man on two counts of first-degree murder in the July death of a local husband and wife, the suspect’s defense attorney had yet to hear the news.

Victoria Jayne told the Times-News on Tuesday afternoon she had no idea her client, 43-year-old Wilbert Lester Fair, accused of murdering Lincolnton couple Mike and Bonnie Vincent, had been indicted a day earlier.

“You’ve prompted me to put a call into the District Attorney’s Office,” she said.

Although Jayne anticipated a grand jury would convene in the case on Monday, she was unaware of the outcome before the Lincoln Times-News’ call. She said she looked forward to getting the case going and moving one step closer to her client’s next appearance.

“At least it (the indictment) will get us into court,” she said.

The defense has also not received discovery, the release of information from the prosecution team describing the evidence in the double homicide case.

Both indictments stated Fair “unlawfully, willfully and feloniously and of malice aforethought did kill and murder” the victims.

Lincolnton Police Lt. Brian Greene testified before the grand jury against Fair, according to the indictment documents.

The indictments claim the Vincents were killed on July 24, two days before a former neighbor told police he found the bodies inside their Broome Street residence. The man who discovered the victims had gone to their home to check on the couple, as he often did, and opened the home’s unlocked door after no one responded to his knocks, he told officers.

The exact date of death had been a matter of public speculation until now, due to investigators’ reluctance to release information that might taint the jury pool in the case. Police continue to protect information surrounding the couple’s cause of death, murder weapon and the suspected murder motive.

Michael Miller, assistant district attorney and lead prosecutor in the case, told the Times-News he was satisfied with this week’s indictment.

“We are of course pleased with the grand jury’s decision in this matter,” he said.

While the prosecutorial phase remains premature at this point, the DA’s Office plans to review all evidence in the coming weeks “as we move forward in this very serious case,” Miller said.

 

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