COLUMBUS COUNTY — We have more information about how a 14-year-old boy, reported missing more than two weeks ago, was killed.
Around 3 p.m. Wednesday the body of Jones was found in a remote intersection in Hillsboro. A hunter made the discovery while in the woods off of Barney Taylor Road. Investigators say the body was badly decomposed and covered with pieces of wood, as if someone was trying to hide it.
Jones's bike was found in a ditch on Thanksgiving Day, less than half a mile away from his grandmother's house. Detectives are still working on a motive, but there's been talk on the street that Jones knew something about or possibly witnessed a September murder in Lake Waccamaw.
"We have no direct connection between this and the Lake Waccamaw shooting that we are aware of at this time," Columbus County Sheriff Chris Batten said. "There have been rumors out there, but we try to dispel rumors and try to work with the facts as investigators have to do to bring criminal charges against anybody."
Lake Waccamaw Police arrested Connail Reeves in connection with the drive-by killing of Darnell Frink in late September. Frink was killed when four people wearing masks drove up in a silver Ford Taurus and opened fire. Investigators say forensic evidence found at the scene lead to Reeves's arrest. Police are still searching for more suspects.
What links Delamez Jones, the boy found dead Thursday, to this crime is the fact that his cousin, 19-year-old Santonio Jenerette, was with Reeves at the time of his arrest.
With little confirmed, there are still many questions about how the missing boy turned up dead.
"Every missing person case is a lesson for the people who work it," Monica Caison with the CUE Center for Missing Persons said. "Whether it be how to find someone or how to treat the next case. Just because they fall in a certain age range or might have a personal background that is familiar to that age range of a troubled kid. It doesn't always mean the children run away."