The Latest: Prosecutor to seek death penalty for fugitive

The Latest on a North Carolina fugitive who police said killed a man (all times local):

4:25 p.m.

A prosecutor says he will seek the death penalty against a fugitive charged with kidnaping and killing a man while eluding police in North Carolina for six days.

District Attorney Greg Newman said Phillip Michael Stroupe II was charged with first-degree murder Monday, just hours after 68-year-old Thomas Bryson's body was found. Stroupe was arrested early Thursday.

Henderson Sheriff Charles McDonald says Bryson's body was found Sunday night in a cornfield near Arden, about a 20-minute drive from his Mills River's home.

McDonald said at a news conference that Stroupe kidnapped Bryson right after he left Wednesday morning and likely killed him shortly after. Neither Newman nor McDonald would say how Bryson died.

Four of Stroupe's relatives, including his father, have been charged as accessories after the fact.

Stroupe was awaiting a first court appearance.


11:30 a.m.

The father of a man who eluded police for six days in the western North Carolina mountains has been arrested on accessory kidnapping charges.

Henderson County sheriff's spokeswoman Allison Nock said in a news release that 65-year-old Phillip Michael Stroupe of Burnsville was arrested early Monday and accused of helping his son avoid arrest on a kidnapping charge.

Phillip Michael Stroupe II was arrested Thursday while driving a pickup belonging to 68-year-old Thomas Bryson of Mills River. Bryson's body was found in a corn field in Arden on Sunday night. There is no word on how he died.

The elder Stroupe was being held in the Henderson County jail. It was not known if he has an attorney.

Henderson Sheriff Charles McDonald says Stroupe II likely will face murder charges.


4:15 a.m.

The body of a 68-year-old man believed to have been kidnapped by a North Carolina suspect who eluded officers for six days has been found.

The Asheville Citizen-Times reports that a member of the Skyland Fire and Rescue Department found the body of Thomas Bryson in a corn field in Arden on Sunday night. A cause of death hasn't been determined.

Philip Michael Stroupe II was driving Bryson's truck when authorities found and captured him in Yancey on Thursday after a search that closed parts of the Pisgah National Forest for days. Authorities believe Bryson was kidnapped Wednesday.

Henderson County Sheriff Charles McDonald says Stroupe will likely face murder charges in the coming days, in addition to multiple charges levied in Buncombe, Transylvania, Henderson, Yancey and McDowell counties.


Information from: The Asheville Citizen-Times,