EMERALD ISLE — Patrick Keith-Reich Whitley, alleged to have committed a murder in Emerald Isle Jan. 9, has waived extradition from Texas and is expected in North Carolina later this week, according to Emerald Isle Police Chief Tony Reese.
“I expect he will have a first appearance on Monday” in
Carteret County District Court, the chief said in an email to the News-Times Tuesday afternoon.
Town police earlier this month announced the arrest of Mr. Whitley, 25, of Havelock, in the murder of Carl Eugene Jones Jr. of Newport. Mr. Jones’ body was found in a burning house at 107 Melanie St. in Emerald Isle Jan. 9.
Mr. Whitley was taken into custody in Corpus Christi, Texas, earlier this month by members of the U.S. Marshal’s Service and the Corpus Christi Police Department.
According to Emerald Isle police, Mr. Whitley surrendered in Texas without incident and also faces charges in Carteret County of first-degree arson.
Town police have not released any information about the motive for the killing or the sequence of events that led to the fire and death.
Chief Reese has said the arrest was a collaborative effort, and the department thanked District Attorney Scott Thomas, Carteret County Sheriff Asa Buck and local, state and federal agencies that contributed to the investigation and the arrest of Mr. Whitley.
The department also has expressed appreciation for tips and reports from the public that provided information and assistance in bringing the investigation to a successful conclusion.
Police initially reported Jan. 10 that Mr. Jones was found dead after police and fire department personnel responded to a report of a structure fire.
Chief Reese said a few days later the town had received a 911 hang-up call the night of Jan. 9 and dispatched officers to the location. On the way there, he said, they were able to reach the caller, who said there might be a body in the home.
When emergency personnel arrived on scene, the residence was fully engulfed and crews from Emerald Isle, Western Carteret, Indian Beach and Pine Knoll Shores fire departments worked late into the morning to extinguish the fire.
Contact Brad Rich at 252-864-1532; email Brad@thenewstimes.com; or follow on Twitter @brichccnt.