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Body found murdered in van identified

WYTHEVILLE — Murder charges were filed Friday against a North Carolina couple caught speeding on Interstate 77 in Wythe County with a dead body in the back of their van.
The body has been identified as Kelly Lynette Culley, 42, of Taylorsville, N.C., according to Wythe County Sheriff Doug King, who noted that Culley had been shot multiple times.
The occupants of the van, Lisa Church Damron, 31, and Jerry Wayne Damron, 42, both of Southwest Sixth Street in Taylorsville, N.C., are being held without bond in New River Valley Regional Jail.
Charges were issued Friday morning for both suspects for first degree murder, according to a press release from Det. Sgt. Lisa Johnson of the Taylorsville Police Department.
In addition, the Damrons could be charged with kidnapping, because police believe Culley was still alive when she was placed in the back of the van, according to Taylorsville Police Chief Tony Jones.
The Wythe County deputy stopped the northbound I-77 van around 8:30 a.m. Thursday morning when his radar registered it traveling 85 miles per hour in a 65 zone, King said. Lisa Damron was driving and her husband was in the passenger seat.
After talking with the couple, the deputy placed both of the Damrons under arrest. Lisa was charged with driving while intoxicated and reckless driving. Her husband was charged with being drunk in public.
King said a deputy with his department was doing an inventory on the 2002 Ford Aerostar van before having it towed when the woman’s body was discovered wrapped in a blanket in a trunk compartment in the back of the van.
Upon further investigation, the scene of the homicide was discovered to be in Taylorsville at the residence of the two suspects, according to the press release from Johnson.
Jerry Damron also is charged with possession of a firearm as a convicted felon, three counts of carrying a concealed weapon and felony assault of a police officer.
King said the concealed weapon charges stem from three handguns found inside the van. Police do not yet know whether any of those guns was used in the shooting.
The assault charge resulted from an incident that occurred while Damron was being “placed in lockup,” the sheriff said.
According to an October story by Richard Gould in the Hickory (N.C.) Daily Record, Jerry Damron was arrested on charges of driving under the influence and reckless driving Sept. 26, 2008 in connection with a single-vehicle wreck that claimed the life of the Damron’s nine-year-old son, Hauston.
The story states that Lisa Damron and five of their other children ranging in age from one to seven were in the van Jerry was driving when it struck a tree. Four of the children, ages one, two, three and five, were reportedly critically injured. Lisa Damron and a seven-year-old were treated and released. Police reported Hauston was not wearing a seatbelt.
An obituary for Hauston Damron indicated he had two brothers and six sisters, including one living in Bassett in Southside Virginia, at that time.

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Body found murdered in van identified

WYTHEVILLE — Murder charges were filed Friday against a North Carolina couple caught speeding on Interstate 77 in Wythe County with a dead body in the back of their van.
The body has been identified as Kelly Lynette Culley, 42, of Taylorsville, N.C., according to Wythe County Sheriff Doug King, who noted that Culley had been shot multiple times.
The occupants of the van, Lisa Church Damron, 31, and Jerry Wayne Damron, 42, both of Southwest Sixth Street in Taylorsville, N.C., are being held without bond in New River Valley Regional Jail.
Charges were issued Friday morning for both suspects for first degree murder, according to a press release from Det. Sgt. Lisa Johnson of the Taylorsville Police Department.
In addition, the Damrons could be charged with kidnapping, because police believe Culley was still alive when she was placed in the back of the van, according to Taylorsville Police Chief Tony Jones.
The Wythe County deputy stopped the northbound I-77 van around 8:30 a.m. Thursday morning when his radar registered it traveling 85 miles per hour in a 65 zone, King said. Lisa Damron was driving and her husband was in the passenger seat.
After talking with the couple, the deputy placed both of the Damrons under arrest. Lisa was charged with driving while intoxicated and reckless driving. Her husband was charged with being drunk in public.
King said a deputy with his department was doing an inventory on the 2002 Ford Aerostar van before having it towed when the woman’s body was discovered wrapped in a blanket in a trunk compartment in the back of the van.
Upon further investigation, the scene of the homicide was discovered to be in Taylorsville at the residence of the two suspects, according to the press release from Johnson.
Jerry Damron also is charged with possession of a firearm as a convicted felon, three counts of carrying a concealed weapon and felony assault of a police officer.
King said the concealed weapon charges stem from three handguns found inside the van. Police do not yet know whether any of those guns was used in the shooting.
The assault charge resulted from an incident that occurred while Damron was being “placed in lockup,” the sheriff said.
According to an October story by Richard Gould in the Hickory (N.C.) Daily Record, Jerry Damron was arrested on charges of driving under the influence and reckless driving Sept. 26, 2008 in connection with a single-vehicle wreck that claimed the life of the Damron’s nine-year-old son, Hauston.
The story states that Lisa Damron and five of their other children ranging in age from one to seven were in the van Jerry was driving when it struck a tree. Four of the children, ages one, two, three and five, were reportedly critically injured. Lisa Damron and a seven-year-old were treated and released. Police reported Hauston was not wearing a seatbelt.
An obituary for Hauston Damron indicated he had two brothers and six sisters, including one living in Bassett in Southside Virginia, at that time.

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