Carlton Rudd

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Carlton Rudd’s death in June 2010 was murder, the medical examiner says. He was living in Henderson with a woman and her son when the house they shared at 3100 N.C. Highway 158 Business caught fire.

Ethel Watson, 54, and her son, Anthony Watson, 36, got out. Rudd did not. The Vance County Sheriff’s Office determined the fire had been intentionally set and arrested the Watsons for murder and arson.

But the Vance County District Attorney’s office decided the case against the Watsons wasn’t strong enough. Assistant DA Bill Griffin wrote, “The charges against the Watsons were dismissed, but the investigation remains open. There’s a possibility that charges could be filed in the future.”

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