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Air Force vet charges after authorities discover naked remains of North Carolina teen in river

March 7, 2018  |  Posted by: Francesca Falzarano
Air Force vet charges after authorities discover naked remains of North Carolina teen in river

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Autopsy result reveals North Carolina teen found dead in a river had zip-tie around her wrist

An autopsy has revealed that a 19-year-old discovered dead in a river North Carolina river bound a zip tie around her wrist was violently murdered.

Press outlets reported that the pathologist couldn’t provide an exact cause of death for Kristen Stone, whose naked remains were recovered in the Cape Fear River by a fisherman back in August. But the autopsy proposes that she could have been smothered, suffocated, or drowned.

Law enforcement officials charged a 33-year-old former Air Force veteran identified as Charles Cottingham, with first-degree murder in Stone’s slaying, WNCN reported.

Court documents revealed that Cottingham was charged with sexually assaulting the victim a year earlier in Hoke County.

Authorities said that he held a gun to her head and forced her to perform a sexual act after responding to an ad on Backpageoffering escort services.

Officials said investigators discovered Stone had placed another similar ad on Backpage in Greenville.

Cottingham has remained in custody since September 2017 on bond and is scheduled to appear back in court on March 27th.

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