First Posted: 1/15/2009
LUMBER BRIDGE - Authorities have few clues in what they are calling an execution-style murder of a St. Pauls man whose body was found Wednesday. Patrick Carlton Ashley had been bound, gagged and shot in the head.
Investigators say Ashley's body was found in the back seat of his 1991 Infinity that had been abandoned in a ditch off McNeil Pond Road near Hoke County.
Sheriff's Maj. Randal Patterson said Ashley, 31, was dressed only in boxer shorts and his hands and feet had been bound and his mouth gagged. Investigators would not release what was used to tie up Ashley or put in his mouth.
Ashley lived at 498 Edgegrove Circle with his wife and two children.
“It just appeared to be execution style because of the fact that he was tied up and shot in the head,” Patterson said. “We don't know if it happened where the car was found or not. We got some names of some people we're trying to locate for questioning.”
Investigators found the body after a motorist reported seeing the car in the ditch about 1:37 a.m. Wednesday. Lumber Bridge volunteer firefighters responded and called the Robeson County Sheriff's Office.
An autopsy was done Wednesday. The State Bureau of Investigation is assisting in the investigation. Anyone with information can call Patterson at 671-3100.