EDENTON, N.C. -- The State Bureau of Investigation has been called in to investigate the case of a decapitated body found in an open field April 7. Chowan County Sherriff Dwayne Goodwin confirmed fingerprints run by the state crime lab identified the body as 26-year-old Kelvin Singleton, the man who escaped from the Chowan County jail March 27. Sheriff Goodwin also confirmed tattoos on Singleton's body helped identify him.
Further investigation reveals some of those tattoos were gang-related. Law enforcement agencies, including the State Bureau of Investigation, Bertie County and Chowan County Sheriff Offices are looking into whether the crime was gang-related.
Sheriff Goodwin says this is one of the strangest crimes he's seen in his more than 25 years of law enforcement.
According to the Chowan County Sheriff's Office, Singleton created a weapon-like tool from a toothbrush and forced a detention officer to release him from jail. Singleton was considered a dangerous person on the run and since his escape, Sheriff Goodwin says policies at the jail have been changed.
Singleton was in jail for robbery with a dangerous weapon, kidnapping and larceny charges. One day before Singleton was to be transferred to Charlotte to face assault charges there, he escaped.
His partially decomposed body was found in an open field at the edge of a wooded area April 7. Sheriff Goodwin says Singleton's body was in the field for a few days before it was found. Bertie County Sheriff's Office confirmed the body was headless and they do not know where the head is at this point. Sheriff Goodwin adds if anyone has any information regarding this crime to contact the Bertie or Chowan Sheriff Offices.
The medical examiner said the cause of death is pending, but the death was a homicide.