ROXBORO, N.C. — One of the two people charged in the murder of an 80-year-old woman appeared in court Thursday.
Before his arrest on Wednesday night, Roger Wilkerson was out on bond on charges from January of 2021. An incident report from the Person County Sheriff’s Office showed Wilkerson was charged with breaking and entering in another home invasion while a 14-year-old was home alone.
Now, Wilkerson and another person younger than 18, who investigators say is related to Wilkerson, are charged in the murder of 80-year-old Nancy Horton.
“It’s sad, but it was a brutal murder,” said Person County Sheriff Dewey Jones.
Jones said investigators believe Wilkerson and the other person entered Horton’s house through an open window late Monday night or early Tuesday morning.
“She had made some comments to people about how the weather was nice, and she had left the windows up,” said Jones. “Some of the family members said she always locked [the windows] at night before she went to bed, so we think, we really believe, that she was still awake.”
“We were able to recover a lot of physical evidence, and also in Mrs. Horton’s murder case, we have a lot of forensic evidence that was collected,” said Jones.
Since 2011, records showed Wilkerson had 43 felony convictions. Most of them involve breaking and entering, larceny, including of firearms, and conspiracy. He also has two pending felonies following last year’s arrest.
Jones said when investigators searched Wilkerson’s house in connection with a series of car break-ins, they found evidence linking him to Horton.
“We were into that search warrant for less than like three minutes … and we started finding stuff that came from the murder residence,” he said.
Horton has been described as a loving mother, grandmother and the glue holding the community together.
“What I know of her, she’s the type of person if you needed something and you asked, she would probably give it to you,” said Jones.
Investigators believe there is a possibility of other suspects in the case but they’re confident in the two they have right now. Investigators are also still combing through forensic evidence.
“It’s a very sad day, and I truly believe she was a victim of opportunity,” said Jones. “I don’t think that they really set out and targeted.”
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