Sunday, February 25, 2024

Boiling Spring Lakes police get break in 24-year-old cold case, Wilmington man arrested

Bryan Lee O'Daniels, 44, was arrested for a murder he's been charged with committing in 1995 in Boiling Spring Lakes. (Port City Daily photo/Courtesy Brunswick County Sheriff's Office)
Bryan Lee O’Daniels, 44, was arrested and charged with committing a 1995 Boiling Spring Lakes murder. (Port City Daily photo/Courtesy Brunswick County Sheriff’s Office)

The cold case murder was reopened after a local TV segment.

BOILING SPRING LAKES — After pursuing new leads, authorities made a major break in the 24-year-old murder cold case.

In July 1995, 25-year-old Timothy Smart was reported missing in Boiling Spring Lakes. A television news segment aired in May 2018, calling attention to Smart’s disappearance.

After the segment aired, the Boiling Spring Lakes Police Department (BSLPD) said new information came to light and the case was reconsidered as a homicide investigation.

“Established leads were re-addressed and new leads were developed,” according to BSLPD’s release Tuesday.

New information led to a yearlong investigation led by BSLPD, Brunswick County Sheriff’s Office, New Hanover County Sheriff’s Office, and the State Bureau of Investigation.

Work by each agency led to the arrest of Bryan Lee O’Daniels Monday afternoon in Leland.

O’Daniels, 44, lives in Murrayville in Wilmington. He has been charged with one count of murder and is currently being held without bond in Brunswick County.

Case notes from the original reporting officer, Mike Parsons of BSLPD, “were instrumental in helping bring resolution to this case,” according to BSLPD’s release Tuesday.

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