Tuesday, July 23, 2024

Authorities confirm remains in Georgia is slain Wilmington resident KC Johnson

Hicks, of South Carolina, has been charged with first-degree murder, robbery with a dangerous weapon, kidnapping and financial card theft for allegedly killing KC Johnson, whose remains were identified washing ashore in Georgia. (Courtesy photo)

WILMINGTON — Human remains that washed ashore a state over were identified as a local transgender woman KC Lee Johnson, who was killed in January.

Johnson, 27, was reported missing on Jan. 14. Wilmington Police Department suspect she was murdered by 26-year-old William Haven Hicks, currently being held in the New Hanover County Detention Center.

READ MORE: Vigils held for slain transgender woman, ‘no evidence of hate crime,’ WPD says

ALSO: Man charged with murder in KC Johnson case receives no bond

Hicks, of South Carolina, has been charged with first-degree murder, robbery with a dangerous weapon, kidnapping and financial card theft. During a Jan. 24 court appearance, he did not receive a bond for the former three charges, but was issued a $2,500 secured bond for financial theft.

Extradited from Myrtle Beach after his Jan. 17 arrest, Hicks was detained when police were called to do a welfare check and found a fraud charge against him. After arresting Hicks, they learned he was wanted by the Wilmington Police Department for first-degree murder.

One day after Hicks’ arrest, Johnson’s remains washed ashore the banks of the Savannah River near a sugar refinery. They were located by Chatham County Police Department and sent off for an autopsy by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation.

Both CCPD and CBI confirmed Tuesday the report’s findings matched Johnson.

“Our condolences go out to Johnson’s family during this difficult time,” WPD wrote in a statement and explained the investigation is ongoing.

WPD suspect Hicks and Johnson linked up in the Love Grove community in mid-January after meeting on a dating app.

Allegedly, Hicks stole her personal property, including purse, ID and financial cards, the latter valued at $100. The warrant also notes Hicks restrained and held Johnson hostage, transporting her without consent and doing “serious bodily injury.” Documents indicate she was killed with a hammer near the 1300 block of King Street in Wilmington.

According to the assistant to the district attorney, Samantha Dooies, Hicks does not have a public appearance scheduled in Federal District Court in the near future. However, Dooies said the district attorney’s office expects the case “to go before the Grand Jury, likely in the next several weeks.” A grand jury determines if the evidence is strong enough to indict the suspect.

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Shea Carver
Shea Carver
Shea Carver is the editor in chief at Port City Daily. A UNCW alumna, Shea worked in the print media business in Wilmington for 22 years before joining the PCD team in October 2020. She specializes in arts coverage — music, film, literature, theatre — the dining scene, and can often be tapped on where to go, what to do and who to see in Wilmington. When she isn’t hanging with her pup, Shadow Wolf, tending the garden or spinning vinyl, she’s attending concerts and live theater.

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