Franklin County deputies release name of victim, more details about suspect in homicide case

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HARDY, Va. (WFXR) – Franklin County deputies have released the name of the homeowner was found shot to death in his home on Woodthrush Circle Saturday.

Deputies believe 54-year-old Rodney Brown was shot and killed by his live-in girlfriend’s son, 22-year-old Michael Alexander Brown, just before noon. They say there is no apparent motive in the murder and that Michael remains at-large.

Security camera image of Brown, seen at a ‘local shop’ Saturday (courtesy: Franklin County Sheriff’s Office)

Kenneth Meador says he still can’t believe what happened to his neighbor. He says he was home at the time and heard the sirens up the road, but didn’t think anything of it.

“Then when I heard there’d been a shooting, didn’t even think about Rodney, because I’ve known Rodney. He grew up here, I did too. We were friends, neighbors,” said Meador.

“Rodney was a super nice guy. He was really polite, worked hard. Just a great guy.”

‪This is the person deputies in Franklin County are looking for in connection to a homicide from yesterday. He’s a…

Posted by Eric Pointer WFXR on Sunday, November 10, 2019

Michael is a Marine, last stationed at Camp Lejeune in North Carolina, and deserted his post as a combat engineer around October 18, according to deputies. He was last seen in and around Franklin County over the past two weeks, but deputies say it is unclear where he may be headed or may be staying.

They say Michael has been known to live in the woods and frequent National Parks and Forests. He is believed to be armed with a high-powered rifle and may have access to other weapons.

“It surprised me that, that would happen here in the neighborhood. You’d think something like that would happen somewhere else, but not back in your backyard,” said Meador.

Anyone who comes into contact with Michael Brown should use extreme caution and contact law enforcement immediately. He has recently been driving a 2008 black Lincoln Town Car with a possible NC license plate, EHP-4877. Anyone with information on this homicide or the location of Michael Alexander Brown is urged to contact Sgt. Nolen at 540-483-6662.

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