Monday, 07 May 2018 14:04

Governor establishes rewards in two city murders

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Rewards from the office of Governor Roy Cooper have been established in separate Roanoke Rapids murders.

Both rewards are for $5,000 and could be paid for information leading to the arrest and conviction of those responsible for the murders of Jonathan Martice Andino and James Russ Harvey.

Andino, 23, was murdered December 18, 2010, while Harvey, 34, was murdered August 24, 2016.


Andino murder

Andino was involved in what police initially thought was a fatal motor vehicle collision on Chockoyotte Street at Eastwood Apartments.

It was later discovered Andino died as a result of a gunshot wound and not as a result of the wreck, the governor’s office said in a statement announcing the rewards.

During the course of the probe a man, Jayquan Cotton, was arrested and charged.

A search warrant filed at the time indicated Cotton allegedly planned to sell Andino Percocet but things went wrong when a reliable source, who was setting up the Percocet deal, got nervous because a white person he didn’t know was with Andino, the documents said.

Even though Andino took the stranger back to Walmart, Cotton still allegedly shot him, when he came back to Chockoyotte Trailer Park with the reliable source, affidavits filed by Roanoke Rapids Police Department detectives Charles Vaught and Frankie Griffin showed at the time.

In 2011 a district court judge ruled there was no probable cause to bound the case against Cotton to the grand jury.

Roanoke Rapids police Captain Bobby Martin said he believes probable cause was established in the matter. “From what I’ve read in the case file, from the probable cause hearing, I think with fine-tuning and more information it can be established. It’s going to take some work but I feel it can be done.”

Martin said he believes the reward may help. “It gives people incentive to give information they have. It says, ‘hey, we appreciate you helping out the governor.’ It’s a way of giving back to the citizens.”

Martin said going over the case, “Going back with a fresh set of eyes, I think they established (probable cause). It’s a matter of trying to get the court’s attention there is probable cause. Now we’re hoping it will help someone come forward. We’ll be touching base with witnesses we’ve talked with before.”

Martin declined comment on the search warrant and court testimony tying the murder to a drug deal.


Harvey murder

Harvey was shot and killed while he sat outside a residence in the 900 block of Henry Street. Harvey was confined to a wheelchair from injuries he received earlier in life.

The statement says a suspect or suspects walked up to him in an attempt to rob him and during the attempted robbery, Harvey was shot multiple times.

Said Martin of the case, “We’re still investigating. There’s somebody out there that knows something. We know he wasn’t out there by himself. It was in close proximity to homes. Someone knows what happened. I hope it (the reward) will jar someone’s memory.”

Anyone having information concerning these cases is encouraged to call the police department at 252-533-2810, Crimestoppers at 252-583-4444 or the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation at 919-662-4500.

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