Waynesville, NC -
***UPDATED at 9:16 A.M. on Tuesday, March 25th***
Read the text of a press release we received from the Haywood County (N.C.) Sheriff's Office on the shooting death below:
A 17-year-old Maggie Valley, North Carolina teen has been charged as an adult with first-degree murder in the shooting death of her father.
Crystal Brooke Howell was arrested Sunday in Richmond County, Georgia, on a Haywood County warrant initially charging her with concealing the death of her father, 50-year-old Michael Joseph Howell.
Mr. Howell’s body was discovered by potential renters of his property at 497 Pless Underwood Road in the Sheepback Mountain community near Maggie Valley. Local law enforcement received information about the incident Saturday afternoon.
According to Monday morning’s preliminary autopsy findings, Howell died from a single shotgun wound to the head. A murder warrant for Crystal Howell was issued a short time later.
“This tragic event appears to have been an isolated incident,” said Haywood County Sheriff Greg Christopher. “There is no evidence to suggest any risk to other Haywood County citizens.”
The investigation unfolded quickly as Haywood County officers worked together on the case with Waynesville Police Department, North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation, District Attorney’s office and Maggie Valley Fire Department, as well as sheriff’s offices in Richmond and Columbia counties, in Georgia.
“Hard work and cooperative effort brought this matter to a rapid conclusion,” said Sheriff Christopher.
Ms. Howell is being held in jail in Georgia while awaiting extradition proceedings.
A 17-year-old girl has been charged with first-degree murder in the shooting death of her father.
According to the Asheville Citizen-Times, Crystal Howell was arrested in Richmond County and is being charged with concealing the death of her father, Michael Howell.
Michael Howell, 50, died from a single shotgun wound to the head. Authorities say Crystal Howell is being held in the Richmond County jail.
"This tragic event appears to have been an isolated incident," said Haywood County Sheriff Greg Christopher. "There is no evidence to suggest any risk to other Haywood County citizens."
The Sheriff's Office worked with the Waynesville Police Department, State Bureau of Investigation, District Attorney's Office, Maggie Valley Fire Department and authorities in Richmond and Columbia counties in Georgia.
"Hard work and cooperative effort brought this matter to a rapid conclusion," Christopher said.
At one time, Michael Howell was a sports writer for the Columbia County News Times and Augusta Chronicle in Augusta.
WJBF put in a call to the Haywood County Sheriff's Office for more information on when Crystal will be extradited back to North Carolina, but authorities there have yet to give us an answer.