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Posted on August 17, 2015
by Dave Gibson —
The Johnston County Report

 The body of a missing 20 year-old Rowan County woman was discovered in a crude grave near Smithfield Thursday night. An autopsy confirmed the remains were that of Elisha Walker from Rowan County, NC. A Smithfield man has now been charged with her murder.

On November 11, 2014, Walker’s mother reported her as missing to the Rowan County Sheriff’s Office. Friends and family told detectives they had last spoken to Walker in late-October 2014. Walker was known to frequently place phone calls, send texts and post to Facebook but had not done so since October 23rd.

On November 22, 2014 Walker’s silver 2000 Pontiac Sunfire car was discovered burned in a field near Clinton in Sampson County. Sampson and Rowan County authorities processed the car and “several leads were developed in the case” according to a press release.

Angel Dejesus Arias, 23, was developed as a suspect. Arias was living near Walker’s home in Salisbury, NC when she disappeared. Arias, a known member of the Latin Kings street gang, was also known to frequent the Smithfield and Clinton areas. In February 2015, Arias moved from an address near Salisbury to Johnston County.

In July 2015, Rowan detectives used a cadaver detection K-9 dog to search around Arias’ residence near Salisbury. That same month, Arias was confined in the Johnston County Jail on unrelated drug charges.

Detectives identified a residence on Homestead Lane, off Swift Creek Road, near Smithfield as a possible location of Walker’s remains.

 Thursday night, crime scene investigators obtained a search warrant for the property. With the aid of a Wake County Sheriff’s office cadaver detection K-9 dog they located a small depression in a wooded area. The area was excavated and the remains were found in a “crude grave.” The NC Medical Examiner’s Office in Raleigh positively identified the remains.

Angel Arias was arrested Friday and charged with murder and larceny of a motor vehicle. Arias was being held in the Johnston County Jail Friday afternoon pending transport to Rowan County.


Completely irrelevant to the story, but why do they always say a crude or makeshift grave? Do they expect killers to be experts at gravedigging or something?


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