SILER CITY — Three men connected to a Siler City murder were indicted by a Grand Jury and arrested last Thursday after a sensitive and secretive month-long investigation, according to local police and the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation.
On June 15, Siler City police were dispatched to 415 East Sixth St. in response to reports of gunshots, according to Siler City Police Chief Mike Wagner. Upon arrival, officers found Todd Laymond Brown, who lived in the house, with a gunshot wound. Emergency care was administered, but Brown succumbed to his injuries at the scene.
Soon after launching a homicide investigation, Siler City police contacted the N.C. State Bureau of Investigation for assistance, according to a SCPD press release.
“After numerous interviews and searches, as well as collaboration with the Chatham County District Attorney’s Office, the evidence collected during the investigation was submitted to a Grand Jury,” SCPD Lt. Jason Boyd said in the release. “The Grand Jury returned with indictments on three individuals for first degree murder and robbery with a dangerous weapon.”
The three men indicted were:
• Anthony Tyrone Seymore, 30, of 1677 Lower Moncure Rd., Sanford
• Arsenio Lawon Smith, 33, of 205 South Tenth Street, Apartment D7, Siler City
• Timothy Lashon Eubanks, 42, of 405 East Sixth St., Siler City
All three are in jail at the Chatham County Detention Center with no bond allowed.
Police did not immediately identify Brown as the victim after news of his murder came out last month, nor did they make early arrests after identifying suspects. Wagner cited the unusually sensitive nature of the investigation for his decision to withhold details.
“It was so intertwined in our community that literally releasing information would have cost people their lives,” Wagner told the News + Record. “There was a real danger to our community.”
Wagner declined to elaborate further.
Besides the Siler City Police Department and NCSBI, the Chatham County District Attorney’s Office, Pittsboro Police Department and Chatham County Sheriff’s Office were integral in carrying out the murder investigation, Wagner said, which is Siler City’s second in the last six months.
Last month, an extradition team retrieved Sergio “Yovani” Rodriguez Pereira from Gwinnett County, Georgia, where he’d fled after allegedly shooting his brother-in-law, Ramon Hernandez.
Hernandez, 28, died Dec. 20 in the UNC-Chapel Hill Medical Center after he was shot several times in the torso. He’d been found earlier the same day on Waterford Street after authorities received reports of gunshots. A witness later identified Rodriguez as the shooter.
Rodriguez, 24, faces one count of first-degree murder and three counts of assault with a deadly weapon among other less serious charges. He was scheduled to appear in court last month, but his court date was moved to September 13. Court representatives did not respond to News + Record requests for an explanation of the postponement.
Siler City’s crime rate exceeds the state and national average, according to Wagner. In the last complete year of data, the town had 67 violent crimes, he previously told the board of commissioners, including murder and rape, and 325 property crimes.
Since coming to Siler City two years ago — after spending most of his career in Virginia — Wagner has sought to bolster his department’s staff and improve the department’s relationship with residents, which he says has been strained in recent years.
“Without that relationship,” he said, “this department will fail its community. We can’t do it alone.”
Reporter D. Lars Dolder can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and on Twitter @dldolder.
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