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  • Writer's pictureJefferson Weaver

McKamey Headed for Death Row

James Edward McKamey will become the 137th inmate on North Carolina’s Death Row when he is transferred from the Columbus County Detention Center in the coming days.

After mandatory appeals, McKamey will face lethal injection in the first capital murder conviction and sentence in Columbus County in more than a decade. McKamey killed beloved Whiteville music teacher Carol Greer in 2016, and stabbed her neighbor, Reshonta Love, 19 times.

A jury from Brunswick County found McKamey guilty of first degree capital murder Jan. 18. They began deliberations Wednesday during the sentencing phase of the trial. It took them less than a total of five hours to recommend the death penalty. McKamey was also found guilty of attempted first degree murder, armed robbery, and assault with intent to kill, inflicting serious injury.

District Attorney Jon David said McKamey had been working on a home on West Nance street, just off J.K. Powell Boulevard, when the attacks occurred. McKamey was working on the property for Love’s boyfriend to make money for drugs, David said. After an argument with Love, McKamey stabbed her 19 times while they were sitting in her car outside McKamey’s West Nance Street home. A neighbor heard the assault and called 911.

Love managed to get McKamey out of the car, David said, and drove herself to Columbus Regional. She underwent emergency surgery for her injuries.

With a quantity of cash stolen from Love’s vehicle, McKamey fled in the direction of Smyrna Drive. Whiteville Police responded to the area, David said, but did not locate McKamey.

The next day, a neighbor found Greer’s body in front of a shed in her yard on Smyrna Drive, a short distance from Nance Street.

Greer had been stabbed and slashed to death. WPD and the State Bureau of Investigation immediately began searching for McKamey.

Digital and physical evidence pointed to McKamey,” David said in a press release. Greer’s Subaru automobile was missing, and WPD put out an alert looking for the vehicle.

“As McKamey had connections in Brunswick County,” David said, “investigators contacted the Brunswick County Sheriff’s Office to put them on notice that McKamey may be located within their County.”

McKamey’s wife was spotted at numerous locations around the Southport and Boiling Springs Lakes areas of Brunswick County. The Brunswick County Sheriff’s Office saturated that area with a law enforcement presence and spotted a white Subaru with a stolen plate. After initiating a traffic stop, officers found McKamey driving the Subaru and his wife in the passenger seat.

Agents with the SBI located blood in the Subaru that was consistent with the DNA profiles of Love and Greer, as well as DNA profiles consistent with McKamey. Agents also located two stolen license plates in the Subaru.

McKamey was also sentenced to 180 to 228 months in prison for the attempted murder of Love, and 73 to 100 months in prison each for the robbery with a dangerous weapon of Love and Greer.

“The death penalty is the law of North Carolina and the District Attorney’s Office will continue to seek its application in the most egregious murder cases,” said David. “The senseless killing of Carol Greer was an incident which cried out for maximum justice, and we felt it was important to let the community decide the appropriate punishment. We appreciate the service and sacrifice of the juror members who were asked to perform such a difficult task. I am grateful for the comprehensive investigation performed by the State Bureau of Investigation, particularly Special Agent Hunter Whitt, as well as the Whiteville Police Department and the Brunswick County Sheriff’s Office, who provided the necessary evidence to secure this conviction and sentence.”

Of the 137 people on death row, McKamey will be the second current inmate from Columbus. Norfolk "Fuzzy" Best was convicted of killing a Whiteville couple in 1994. He was recently granted a new trial.

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