Murders come at year’s end

Published 3:48 pm Thursday, December 30, 2010

Contributing Editor

Three murders in the final months of 2010 that resulted in the arrests of five people is the No. 3 story in the Washington Daily News’ Top 10 for 2010.
The first of the three murders occurred Oct. 7 in Bath when Leonard Alfred Willson III, 53, of Bath was beaten to death. Willson was a paraplegic.
Arturo Lopez-Perez, 16, Martel Deval-DeAngel Weston, 22, both from Belhaven, and Domonic Kidean Farrow, 23, of Mapletown Lane in Swan Quarter, have been charged with murder in Willson’s death. Willson lived in Bath about 15 years.
Washington attorney John Bramble has been appointed to represent Lopez-Perez, according to documents on file in the Beaufort County Courthouse. Wilson attorney Randell Hughes has been appointed to represent Farrow. Greenville attorney Ernest L. Conner has been appointed to represent Weston.
Additional charges are expected against Lopez-Perez, Weston and Farrow, according to a news release issued by the Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office in October.
An Oct. 18 shooting in Washington that left a father injured and his son facing an assault with a deadly weapon charge became a homicide when the father, Gary Curtis Upton Sr., died two days later. The shooting occurred at 118 Lilley Road.
Upon his father’s death, Gary Curtis Lupton Jr. was charged with murder.
“It was a family dispute situation involving him and his son,” Washington police Lt. William Chrismon said then.
Upton was transferred from the Beaufort County Detention Center to an N.C. Department of Correction facility in Raleigh for “safekeeping,” though the reason for this move was unknown. Prisoners may be sent to “safekeeping” for reasons ranging from medical needs to behavioral problems, the Beaufort County clerk of court’s office related.
On Dec. 7, the Washington Police Department charged Michael Tracy Moore, 40, with an open count of felony murder.
The arrest was made after officers responded to a report of a domestic disturbance early that morning at Quail Ridge Apartments where the victim resided.
Officers located a victim of an altercation, with that victim suffering fatal injuries, according to the department. The victim was Carolyn Gizzelle Sceko-Rawls.
Moore was place in the Beaufort County Detention Center without benefit of bond pending his first court appearance (related to the murder charge) Dec. 7.
Moore has a criminal record that includes, but is not limited to, second-degree arson, larceny of a motor vehicle, misdemeanor breaking and entering, larceny, shoplifting, communicating threats and assault on a female, according to the N.C. Department of Correction’s website. Moore was released from prison in June after serving a sentence of two years and 29 days after his probation in an arson case was revoked. His offenses go back to at least January 1996.
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