Press Release Archive
JUVENILE DETAINED IN DOUBLE HOMICIDE CASE
Hillsborough, NC (October 5, 2022) – Less than hour ago, authorities detained a juvenile in connection with the murders of Devin Clark and Lyric Woods.
Sheriff Charles Blackwood said, “We hope this apprehension provides some relief to the families and friends of Devin and Lyric, who have experienced an excruciating loss. Obviously, the capture of the suspect does not restore their loved one to them. The grieving process is a long one, and we hope the community will continue to support them in their pain.”
Under North Carolina General Statutes, no one at the Orange County Sheriff’s Office has the ability or authority to release any further information until such time the case is no longer under the jurisdiction of the Juvenile Court. Not only does the relevant statute prohibit the release of the juvenile’s name, but also extends to the release of details such as who apprehended the individual, as well as when and where the apprehension took place.
Blackwood added, “We understand our community is hungry for information to help process this tragedy; however, the laws regarding juvenile confidentiality are ironclad. We have no ability to set them aside, even given the heightened interest in this case.”
SHERIFF ADDRESSES JUVENILE CONFIDENTIALITY
Hillsborough, NC (September 26, 2022) – Regarding the recent double-murder of Devin Clark and Lyric Woods, Orange County Sheriff Charles Blackwood wants to highlight what the community can expect going forward.
He said, “The North Carolina General Statutes prohibit the release of all records and files pertaining to cases of juveniles under supervision of juvenile court counselors. A record includes, but is not limited to, information obtained from witnesses, laboratory tests, surveillance, confidential informants, investigators, photographs, measurements, and officer case notes. Moreover, a different subsection explicitly provides that law enforcement shall withhold these materials from public inspection unless the case is transferred to superior court.”
Beginning December 1, 2019, 16- and 17-year-old individuals who commit crimes in North Carolina are no longer charged automatically in the adult criminal justice system. If there is a notice of indictment or the court finds probable cause for a Class A-G felony committed by a 16 or 17 year old, a district court judge shall order the transfer of the case to superior court. First-degree murder is a Class A felony. The juvenile then has a 10-day right to appeal the transfer order. During the pendency of the appeal, which can be a protracted process, the juvenile’s confidentiality must remain protected.
Sheriff Blackwood recognizes the public’s desire for information related to this tragic case, and seeks continued patience. “We cannot afford a misstep this close to the goal line.”
JUVENILE PETITION FILED IN ORANGE COUNTY HOMICIDE CASE
Hillsborough, NC (September 20, 2022) – Orange County Sheriff Charles Blackwood announced this afternoon that the investigation into the deaths of Devin Clark, 18, and Lyric Woods, 14, led authorities to seek a juvenile petition against a 17 year old for two counts of first-degree murder. Juvenile court personnel with the Division of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention filed the petition this afternoon.
Sheriff Blackwood said, “Through the hard work of my investigators, along with the assistance of personnel from many other law enforcement agencies, we have identified a suspect in this case. We will now work with local, state, and federal authorities to apprehend and present the suspect to the court system.”
Beginning December 1, 2019, 16- and 17-year-old individuals who commit crimes in North Carolina are no longer charged automatically in the adult criminal justice system. If there is a notice of indictment or the court finds probable cause for a Class A-G felony committed by a 16 or 17 year old, a district court judge shall transfer the case to superior court. First-degree murder is a Class A felony.
Sheriff Blackwood also said, “I want to thank the families of Devin Clark and Lyric Woods for trusting us and the investigative process during this excruciatingly painful time. I hope the imminent apprehension of this subject will bring them some comfort as they mourn their loved ones.”
The Orange County Sheriff’s Office (OCSO) has an active task force program within the office. Through inter-agency agreements, the OCSO has relationships with many other law enforcement agencies. When needed, multiple agencies work together to investigate crime, leveraging their skills, talents, and experiences.
Said Blackwood, “I am eternally grateful for the relationships we have with local, state, and federal partners. I would like to specifically thank the Alamance County Sheriff’s Office, the Burlington Police Department, the Efland Fire Department, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Viper Unit with the North Carolina State Highway Patrol for their instrumental assistance.”
The investigation remains active. Anyone with additional information is asked to call Investigator Keith Goodwin at (919) 245-2918.
SHERIFF BELIEVES VICTIMS ARE MISSING TEENS
Hillsborough, NC (September 19, 2022) – Orange County Sheriff Charles Blackwood said this afternoon, “Through our ongoing investigation, we have information that suggests the two individuals located off Buckhorn Road yesterday are Lyric Woods, 14, and Devin Clark, 18. Family members reported Lyric missing Saturday afternoon to the Orange County Sheriff’s Office; the deputy filed the missing person’s report in the National Crime Information Center index (NCIC) at 3:44 pm. Devin Clark’s family contacted the Mebane Police Department on Sunday with concerns about his whereabouts. An officer entered him into NCIC at approximately 1:42 pm.
Blackwood went on to say, “Investigators are still awaiting a report from the medical examiner to confirm the victims’ identities. Although we do not have that confirmation yet, in the absence of any other missing persons matching the descriptions of the individuals located, the tragic but logical conclusion is increasingly clear. This loss is devastating for the victims’ families and friends, and indeed for the entire community.”
The investigation is ongoing, and more details will be released as they become available. Please contact Investigator Keith Goodwin with any information regarding this case. His number is (919) 245-2918.
SHERIFF CONFRIMS HOMICIDE INVESTIGATION
Hillsborough, NC (September 19, 2022) – Orange County Sheriff Charles Blackwood confirmed this morning that the Sheriff’s Office is investigating the deaths of the two people found yesterday in western Orange County.
Men riding four-wheelers discovered the bodies, a white female and a black male, just before 3 pm yesterday. Both appear to be less than 20 years old.
The North Carolina Medical Examiner’s Office is working to confirm the identity of the decedents and to establish an official cause of death. Both victims had, what appeared to be, gunshot wounds.
Sheriff Blackwood issued the following statement this morning: “As a parent, I cannot imagine how excruciating the wait for confirmation of the victims’ identify is. However, the process is important and critical to lead us to the person or persons responsible for this horrific crime. I’m asking for your patience as we, along with other investigative agencies, do the work necessary to seek justice for the victims and their families.”
BODY OF WHITE FEMALE AND BLACK MALE FOUND IN WESTERN ORANGE COUNTY
Hillsborough, NC (September 18, 2022) – The bodies located today in western Orange County are that of a white female and a black male. Both appear to be less than 20 years old.
Two men discovered the bodies just before 3 pm while riding four-wheelers in the area.
The investigation is active and ongoing. No further information will be released until the medical examiner establishes the identity of the decedents.
TWO BODIES FOUND IN WESTERN ORANGE COUNTY
Hillsborough, NC (September 18, 2022) – Orange County deputies responded to western Orange County this afternoon after two men reported discovering a pair of bodies just off a power-line easement. The men were riding four-wheelers checking trail cameras.
Investigators are processing the area for evidence and the medical examiner is on scene.
No additional information is available at this time.