UNION COUNTY, N.C. (TCD) -- Deputies have arrested two people in connection with the death of an 18-year-old woman who disappeared late last month.
According to a news release from the Union County Sheriff’s Office, family members reported Kierstyn Williamson missing from Laurens, South Carolina, after she was last seen or heard from on the evening of June 30. The Sheriff’s Office began an investigation Sunday, July 2, which led them to believe Williamson was at a home in the 500 block of Bethpage Lane in Monroe, North Carolina.
Investigators believe Williamson met a man through an online dating website, and they arranged to meet on the night of Friday, June 30, WSOC-TV reports.
The man, Joshua Newton, 25, allegedly drove near the restaurant where Williamson worked to pick her up before driving her back to his residence in Monroe, more than two hours away.
Union County Lt. James Maye told WSOC, "I think they had planned on meeting up and spend some time together on a date, and that’s where [Williamson] met him. That was the plan."
Maye continued, "And, unfortunately, ended in the loss of [Williamson’s] life."
On Tuesday, July 4, the Sheriff’s Office found a body believed to be Williamson’s near Mangum School Road in South Carolina, only a few miles from Newton’s home.
According to WSOC, Newton allegedly killed Williamson, and he had his live-in girlfriend, 22-year-old Victoria Smith, assist with hiding the body.
The Sheriff’s Office arrested Newton on a charge of first-degree murder and obstruction of justice, and Smith faces charges of obstruction of justice and accessory after the fact. Smith remains held on $3 million bond, while Newton remains held without bond, Union County Jail records show.