FAYETTEVILLE, Tenn. (WHNT) – Lincoln County authorities say the public is not in danger as they continue to investigate a string of murders that happened in October 2012. However, they are waiting for lab analysis on evidence before they release specific details about what happened.
Lincoln County Sheriff Murray Blackwelder and District Attorney Robert Carter held a news conference Friday afternoon and said the purpose was to reassure the public about where the case stands.
“This is to make you aware of where we are, and to put your mind at ease that there’s not a serial killer on the loose,” said Sheriff Blackwelder. “This is to bring the public up to date on where we are.”
Blackwelder confirmed two people are in custody in Madison County. However, they are not charged in the murders yet.
“We don’t want to do anything that will jeopardize this case,” Blackwelder said. They were all friends/acquaintances/associates.”
Blackwelder, and District Attorney Carter, both said they are waiting for the state forensics lab to return analysis on evidence collected in the case. They want to be absolutely sure their case is buttoned up before moving forward.
“The one thing I want people to understand — our need for justice, for victims and their families, outweighs any information the public is entitled to,” said Sheriff Blackwelder. “That’s why we’ve been as quiet as we have. We need justice for our victims. We need justice for our families, and no one has a right to endanger that.”
In all, six people died, but how and why the murders happened is still a mystery. Many agencies have poured countless hours and manpower into the case, including the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office, Marshall County Sheriff’s Office, Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, the Fayetteville Police Department and the Madison County Sheriff’s Office in Alabama, among others.
“Hopefully the public will understand us being quiet sometimes is a necessity,” Sheriff Blackwelder added.
On Monday, October 22, 2012, the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office and the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation responded to a home at 3264 Huntsville Highway in Park City. There, they found Chabreya Campbell, 22, her 18-month-old son, Rico Ragland, and another woman, Amber McCaulley, 21. All were dead. Campbell was believed to be six months pregnant.
Campbell’s 3-year-old son, Vincent Crutcher, was unharmed.
Later in the day, authorities were also called to a home near the corner of Monks Road and Fox Wood Drive in Fayetteville, where they found the body of a fourth person, Jessica Brown, 21. Her 2-month-old son was found in the home unharmed.
Authorities confirm the two scenes are connected. They also identified a person of interest in the case, Warren Vincent Crutcher, but Crutcher was found dead the following day in Hazel Green.
A sixth person, Jeffrey Lamar Pope, was shot to death on Ortega Circle in Huntsville. Officials have not given a clear answer on whether Pope’s death is connected to the Tennessee murders.
Read more coverage on the case on WHNT.com.