87-year-old slain, daughter severely injured in eastern Rowan

Emergency personnel responded to 6225 River Road, where an 87-year-old man was found dead after an apparent homicide.
Emergency personnel responded to 6225 River Road, where an 87-year-old man was found dead after an apparent homicide.

An 87-year-old man was found dead Wednesday morning at his eastern Rowan County home in what authorities are calling a homicide. His daughter was badly injured.

J.D. Furr and 62-year-old Sandra Steen were found lying outside the home in the 6200 block of River Road, just off Stokes Ferry Road, by a relative around 8:15 a.m., the Rowan County Sheriff's Office said.

Furr was near the back of the house, and his daughter was lying in the driveway. She was taken to Stanly Memorial Hospital in Albemarle, then transferred by helicopter to another unidentified hospital in the region where she is in the intensive care unit, the Sheriff's Office said.

The extent of Steen's injuries is unknown. Officials report it was an assault and they are searching for suspects. Investigators say there was an apparent robbery, but have not said what items were taken from the property. It is not known if the incident occurred sometime overnight or early Wednesday morning.

The relative told investigators everything was fine Tuesday night at 7:30. A relative went to the home Wednesday morning to help Furr with some work. The home is in a remote area, where neighbors are quite a distance away.

Bloodhounds were used to search around the home, including surrounding wooded areas.

There is no description of a suspect. Investigators are asking neighbors or anyone who was in the vicinity to come forward with information that might help in the investigation.

Kevin Coughenour, a newspaper carrier, was making a delivery just after 10:30 a.m. Wednesday when he stumbled upon investigators at the crime scene.

Coughenour said he's known the victim for at least a decade and called Furr a nice, polite man.

“I just can't believe somebody would do something to this guy, because he's the nicest man you'd ever meet. He's very nice and I'm shocked,” Coughenour said.

He said Furr would regularly meet him at the mailbox and stop to talk. The carrier said Furr sometimes gave him produce and eggs.

“I just can't believe this happened,” he said.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Rowan County Sheriff's Office at 704-216-8700.

Notice about comments:

Salisburypost.com is pleased to offer readers the ability to comment on stories. We expect our readers to engage in lively, yet civil discourse. Salisburypost.com cannot promise that readers will not occasionally find offensive or inaccurate comments posted in the comments area. Responsibility for the statements posted lies with the person submitting the comment, not Salisburypost.com. If you find a comment that is objectionable, please click "report abuse" and we will review it for possible removal. Please be reminded, however, that in accordance with our Terms of Use and federal law, we are under no obligation to remove any third party comments posted on our website. Full terms and conditions can be read here.

Do not post the following:

  • Potentially libelous statements or damaging innuendo.
  • Obscene, explicit, or racist language.
  • Personal attacks, insults or threats.
  • The use of another person's real name to disguise your identity.
  • Comments unrelated to the story.