The Carteret County Sheriffs Department announced the arrest of 26 yr old Lewis Victor Branche “Trey” for one open count of murder against Kristen Bennett and one count of concealing/failing to report her death. The suspect is in the county detention center on no bond and will have a Superior Court first appearance on Wednesday, September 5th, 2018.
Update July 16 2019: Carteret County deputies have found the body of a white female wrapped in a tarp at a house in Mill Creek and items they believe are consistent with being the body of Kristen Bennett. The remains are being taken to Vidant Medical Center to be identified. (Discussions). The remains were discovered at a home owned by a family member of Trey Branche. On July 18, 2019, the medical examiner confirmed the remains to be that of missing Kristen Bennett.
Update: There will be a candle lit vigil for Kristen Bennett at Fort Benjamin Park in Newport NC at 6pm on Saturday September 15. The address is 100 McQueen Blvd, Newport, North Carolina 28570.
Kristen Bennett went missing on August 16, 2018 and was the subject of a large scale search in Carteret County NC and Newport NC. Authorities report that no body has been found at the time this article was published.
Also, authorities with the Sheriffs Department report that the two were considered boyfriend and girlfriend and shared an apartment together at 950 Hibbs Road in Newport, NC. Ms. Bennett was last seen with Mr. Branche two days prior to being reported missing by her mother.
Other facts about this case:
- The county Sheriffs Department and NC State Bureau of Investigation issued a search warrant on the home at 950 Hibbs Rd in Newport NC on August 23rd, 2018 and seized two vehicles belonging to the alleged suspect and victim.
- Physical evidence from a nearby wooded area, along with digital evidence, lead the Sheriffs Department to conclude that the victim was murdered and then obtained an arrest warrant on Tuesday September 4th, 2018.
- The alleged suspect Trey Branche was reported to be working with authorities but abruptly quit cooperating after his arrest.
- Authorities and the family of the victim continue to work together to find remains of her body.
Discussions and Comments
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